Conclusion & References (PA)

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One of the founders of Delta Society, Michael McCulloch, may have said it best in 1981 with this quote describing the relationship and its impact between an animal and a human and the mission to continue the charge:

“In an age of research when it is tempting to reduce human emotions to biochemical reactions and to rely heavily on the technology of medicine, it is refreshing to find that a person’s health may be improved prescribing contact with other living things. Members of the health and allied professions must continue to combine resources, work together in the spirit of cooperation, and never forget to ‘cure when possible but comfort always.’”

More research is needed on animal-assisted programs to ensure their sustainability and future success. Some hesitation still exists on the behalf of some healthcare institutions, corporations and hospital chains over possible legal ramifications of allowing pets in their buildings. Hopefully, local organizations like Canine Assisted Therapy and Pet Partners will continue to be champions of the cause for many years to come. Their efforts and diligence in keeping the standards in place for human-animal interactions will allow more successful programs to exist in healthcare institutions and will open the door for more research to support the efficacy of these programs.




American with Disabilities Act (ADA) Information Line US Department of Justice; 800-514-0301, TTY 800-514-0383 Retrieved April 2015 from

Arkow P. How to start a “pet therapy” program: a guidebook for health care professionals. Colorado Springs, CO: The Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region; 1998.

Baldwin, Kathleen M. Nursing Made Incredibly Easy. 2011 Nov-Dec; 9(6): 18 Animal-Assisted Intervention—Animals Helping Humans Heal.

CDC Guidelines for Environmental Infection Control in Health Care Facilities, MMWR, Vol. 52, RR-10, June 6, 2003

Definitions Development Task Force of the Standards Committee. Generic terms and definitions. Handbook for animal-assisted activities and animal-assisted therapy Renton, WA: Delta Society; 1992, 48.
Eggiman, Janet. (2006). Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy: A Case Report-Animal-Assisted Therapy. Medscape. October 11,2006

Ernst, Lorraine. Annals of Long- Term Care, 22 (10) 2014 October: 1-8

Fine, Aubrey. (2010). Handbook on Animal-Assisted Therapy. Theoretical Foundations and Guidelines For Practice.

Gurock, Peggy L. OTR, and Gurock, Noah D. June, 24, 2014 Animal-Assisted Therapy: Four-legged friends bring smiles to children with complex therapy needs.

International Association of Human Animal Interaction Organizations. The IAHAIO Prague guidelines on animal assisted activities and animal assisted therapy. Renton, WA: Delta Society; 1998.

Jackson, Justone. (2012) Spring, Animal-Assisted Therapy: Human-Animal Bond in Relation To Human Health and Wellness. A Capstone project submitted at Winona State University.

Lefebvre SL, Golab GC, Christensen El, et al – Working Group. Guidelines for animal-assisted interventions in health care facilities. Am J Infect Control 2008; 36:78-85

Lust, E., Ryan-Haddad, A., Coover, K., Snell, J. Consultant Pharmacist, 22(7) 2007 Jul: 580-5. Measuring Clinical Outcomes of Animal-Assisted Therapy: Impact on Resident Medication Usage.

Morrison, Michele L., Complementary Health Practice Review, 12 (51) 2007 January: 51-61. Health Benefits if Animal – Assisted Interventions.

Muñoz Lasa, S.; Ferriero, G.; Brigatti, E.; Valero, R.; Franchignoni, F. Panminerva Medica. 2011 Jun; 53(2): 129-136. “Animal-Assisted Interventions in Internal and Rehabilitation Medicine: A Review of the Recent literature”

Odendall, J.S.J., Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 49 2000 275-280. Animal- assisted therapy-magic or medicine?

Rondeau, Lynda; Corriveau, Hélène; Bier, Nathalie; Camden, Chantal; Champagne, Noël; Dion, Chantale. NeuroRehabilitation. 2010 Jan 1; 27(2): 155-163. Effectiveness Of A Rehabilitation Dog In Fostering Gait Retraining For Adults With A Recent Stroke: A Multiple Single-Case Study.

Uyemura, B. (2011). The Truth About Animal-Assisted Therapy. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 25, 2015, from

Velde, B. P., Cipriani, J. and Fisher, G. (2005), Resident and therapist views of animal-assisted therapy: Implications for occupational therapy practice. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 52: 43–50. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1630.2004.00442.x

U.S. Department of Justice, civil Rights Division, Disability Rights Section. Service Animals. Retrieved on 3/18/2015 from Baylor Animal Assisted Therapy Retrieved on 3/15/15

http://www.nsarco Definition of Emotional Support Animals. Retrieved on 2/22/15. Retrieved on 2/22/15. Animal companions and one-year survival of patients after discharge from a coronary care unit. Pet Partners Animal Program Retrieved on 2/22/15. Retrieved on 3/5/2015 for reference on Freud’s dog



History of Canine Assisted Therapy, Inc. (“C.A.T.”)

C.A.T. is a non-profit organization that is not subsidized by government funding. Founded in 2009, C.A.T. is dedicated to providing pet therapy to children and adults who have developmental and physical challenges as well as those who desire comfort and companionship of a loving pet. C.A.T. improves people’s lives physically, mentally and emotionally.

Co-founders, Debra Berger and Joann Jurgle, joined forces when they saw an unmet need in our community to provide safe, effective and efficient pet therapy for animals and humans. They began with a simple idea that started at Debra’s dining room table where they developed proper certification and standards for volunteer management and programming. Among their first clients were nursing homes in Broward and Palm Beach Counties. C.A.T. has come a long way since operating at a dining room table. C.A.T. progressed to a 750 square foot office space with limited dedicated training space and today C.A.T. has evolved into a 2000 square foot office space with 80% dedicated to pet therapy training and education.

One of the early challenges was that pet therapy was not commonplace like it is now and people were not familiar with the concept. They knocked on doors and continued to be turned away. Their persistence and education has led to a premier “best in class” reputation and now people knock on their door essentially “begging” for their services.

In 2009, C.A.T. started with two (2) founding dogs and two (2) handlers. In less than five (5) years, C.A.T. has grown to 150 certified therapy pets and handlers providing services to over 100 facilities nationwide.

C.A.T.’s vision is to educate and teach people how therapeutic animals can change a person’s life. Whether it is emotionally, physically or mentally. Whether a person is developmentally challenged, physically challenged, lonely or simply loves the companionship of a pet.

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