August 14, 2019 “Working on Us”: Week 11 Topic: Therapy/Emotional Support Animals (Pets)

How could I not respond to this knowing the way I feel about animals and how they can improve the quality of life for an individual?
You can check out Beckie’s original post
August 14, 2019 “Working on Us” This Weeks Mental Health Prompts for Blogging Community: Week 11 Topic: Therapy/Emotional Support Animals (Pets)
here

Prompt #1 Questions:

  1. Do you own a pet for emotional support and/or service/therapy?
    No, but my family has always had a pet or two of some description.
  2. Is your pet a certified therapy animal?
    No.
  3. What kind of pet do you own?
    We have a fourteen and a half year old border collie x springer spaniel, aka Sprollie.
  4. Do you believe that support animals truly assist those in need?
    Most definitely. I have known of Leonbergers,  spaniels, collies, pomeranians and jack russell dogs being trained as assistance dogs or therapy dogs, the latter being taken into residential homes and fussed over. Size doesn’t seem to matter, it’s all down to temperament and training, and I think it’s wonderful.
  5. Do you believe that any animal can be a therapy/support pet?
    Yes, I think it is indeed possible.
    With training such a pet can be matched to circumstances, housing and the individual.

Prompt #2 Narrative:  

Describe how your pet is of support to you? EXAMPLE: Helps with anxiety, depression, PTSD, etc… (And, please… Share their name and a photo) if you desire.

Maggie must be one of the most photographed and ruined dogs in the UK as we love her to bits.
This was her first night in her new home: March 11th 2005.

This was taken the following year in our back garden


This in 2008 in the cottage


These on the boat in 2015


These in February 2019.

When I was working, my job was all figurework (which I loved) and strict deadlines.
Sometimes, I would come home totally exhausted with a thumping headache, and after our evening meal, Maggie would get up on my lap, well half on my lap and half of the arm of the chair, for a cuddle. As I stroked her silky fur, I could feel all the stresses of the day just roll away. After about ten minutes, she’d get down and get in her own bed, job done.
She seems to know when either of us need to feel her presence and is one of the most tactile and loving dogs I have ever known. When I have been depressed or generally just feeling down, she has been there to take my mind off my problems.
There have been times when I have needed to be on my own and to watch her sniffing the flowers or grass, finding the exact blade of grass to pee on (it has to be just so!) makes me smile and relax.

Pictures June 2015

She is a great ice breaker for conversation, usually gets on with other dogs, and has never chased the ducks or the geese on the marina or in the park. They realise she’s not a threat too and come within a foot of us, even with their babies.

This post has been a bit of the Maggie show, but she is just so much a part of our lives, she’s our baby. We hate to see her feeling unsure or afraid, as with thunder or fireworks, unwell and uncomfortable and try very hard to read the signs and what she’s telling us.
I sleep better at night knowing she’s lying there beside me, her gentle rhythmic breathing providing its own lullaby.

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have recently lost our beloved dog Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney, and now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of my GSD so had hers done too. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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26 Responses to August 14, 2019 “Working on Us”: Week 11 Topic: Therapy/Emotional Support Animals (Pets)

  1. I love when you post pictures of Maggie! She is so photogenic and adorable!!! 😍
    I most certainly agree with most animals being able to be trained as a support/emotional pet, but there are just some animals I just quite don’t see fitting into that category. I could be wrong, but I can’t see myself cuddling with a snake or lizard. LOL! Personally speaking, I do adore the furry & feathered friends. Heck, I can see goats, lambs, horses, cows, and little pigs helping someone cope with anxiety and depression much better than a snake.
    Thanks again for sharing all the lovely pictures and your story about Maggie! 🐶💚

  2. Reblogged this on Beckie's Mental Mess and commented:
    REBLOG: Di of “Pensitivity101” Shares her story about her lovely dog “Maggie” in this Week #11 of “Working on Us” – Maggie is not afraid of the paparazzi one bit. LOL! 💚

  3. Sadje says:

    Your love for her is enviable. Lovely post.

  4. bearmkwa says:

    She is absolutely beautiful! We feel much the same about our Maryjane, though she doesn’t travel… she’s always waiting for us at home. More and more, we don’t travel so she won’t be alone and worried about us. She does, I’m certain of it..

    • Maggie comes everywhere with us and doesn’t like us to separate. Her herding instinct kicks in and she tries to round us up!

      • bearmkwa says:

        Sounds like an Aussie Shep that used to belong to one of my Foster Families. I loved that old Mugsie dog! We were constant companions. Really wish I lived in a place where I could get another Aussie Shep. Alas, where I live they have 25 lb limit as well as so many breed restricts that virtually the only dogs you can get are a chihuahua or a yorkie. Grrr…. one of the many reasons we want to move…

      • Maggie weighs in at 14 and a half kilos, so around 32lb

  5. Just the most beautiful soul. She is so lovely.

  6. Loved all those pics of Maggie. Keep posting more, Di! Maggie deserves all that spoiling. Dogs are the best. Spending even a little while with them can relieve all our worries and tensions!

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