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A Model Animal Therapy Program for Mental Health Settings

Patricia McCandless

Abstract


This paper describes the structure and function of a program of animal therapy used with hospitalized psychiatric patients as part of a comprehensive therapy milieu. It begins with identification of some common psychological needs of psychiatric patients and continues with a discussion of ways in which therapeutic recreation programs such as this can address these common needs and facilitate their development in psychotherapy. In addition, potential modifications are explored as a means of adapting the principles of this model to accommodate the resources of virtually any mental health or recreational therapy program.

Keywords


Animal Therapy; Recreation Therapy; Psychiatric Hospitalization; Mental Health; Program Descriptions; Program Models

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