Decision-making in Animal Assisted Play Therapy® and Animal Assisted Therapy practice is a complex process. Not only must practitioners know how to intervene to meet client goals, they must consider and advocate for the needs of the animals. Other factors play a role in determining what an actual intervention, lesson, or session might look like, also. This blogpost considers four aspects that are forefront in the minds of professionals using AAPT in their work.
Quite often when people hear "play therapy" they think of children. Play therapy uses the therapeutic powers of play (based on the seminal work of Dr. Charles Schaefer) and the natural features of childhood to provide a developmentally-attuned set of interventions and...
As Animal Assisted Interventions become more prevalent among professionals, the topic of competencies gains importance. Competences should be viewed as a roadmap to developing the skills, knowledge, and attitudes needed to involve animals effectively and ethically in mental health, allied health, and educational work.
This article explores the unique features that comprise Animal Assisted Play Therapy® as it was created and developed by Dr. Risë VanFleet (USA) and Tracie Faa-Thompson (UK). There are distinct differences with many other forms of Animal Assisted Intervention, and some of these distinctions are described here.
Another frequently asked question about Animal Assisted Play Therapy® pertains to finding the right canine partner and preparing the dog for the work. Most common are questions about which breeds make the best therapy dogs. These are actually more complex questions than many people realize. This blogpost is designed to point readers toward some helpful resources that we have developed.
Read this to explore the field of Animal Assisted Play Therapy® and learn how to get into this exciting field!
As people involved in Animal Assisted Play Therapy® and Animal Assisted Interventions plan to reopen their clinics or practices for in-person sessions, many risk factors must be considered. Risk management plans must be updated to take the pandemic into account. This article provides some excellent resources and some factors to think about when planning for a safe resumption of in-person sessions.
Reports by therapists suggest that their own therapy animals or family companion animals are being involved in their teletherapy sessions. This process is not as straightforward as one might think. This blogpost outlines some key considerations for therapists prior to involving any animals in their sessions.
This article briefly describes Animal Assisted Play Therapy® and some of the elements that make it unique, namely the acceptance and welfare of the animals, the systematic incorporation of playfulness in the process, and the strong emphasis on relationships. It also discusses the trademarks that are used to define it.
Determining if an animal is suitable for therapy work is an important consideration. Different roles for animals require different personalities and skills. It is also important to ensure that the animals are not stressed and actually enjoy their work, not merely tolerate it. This article discusses a goodness-of-fit conceptualization drawn from child development research as it is applied in finding roles that are compatible with animals’ personalities, interests, abilities, and motivations. The model used in the certification program of the International Institute for Animal Assisted Play Therapy® is outlined.