animal and mental health

When it comes to drug rehab and the options available many people are left wondering. Options may seem limited to people who do not know the rehabs that are out there. People who are struggling with addiction, mental health issues, or both want to feel comfortable and safe, many times that safeness is the pet.  

Animal-assisted therapy has grown in popularity. It can be practiced to treat a variety of mental health conditions, and it’s become a common addition to traditional substance use disorder treatment. When combined with other therapies for substance use disorders, the healing approach can drive patients to stay in treatment. Animals can also assist therapists and clients in resolving mental health problems in a way that isn’t attainable with other types of therapy. 

Multiple studies have proven that owning a pet can alter the body’s stress response, like blood pressure response in stressful situations. Owning an animal is also connected with lower cholesterol and increased physical activity. There has also been an association between pet ownership and lower rates of obesity.

Licensed physicians, therapists, nurses, or social workers can administer animal-assisted therapy after undergoing specialized training. The pet involved in the treatment should also proper training and must meet several standards to guarantee the safety and effectiveness of the treatment. Different types of animals can be used during animal-assisted therapy. Animals that are approved by Pet Partners, a leading nonprofit dedicated to strengthening the human-animal bond, include Dogs, Cats, Guinea Pigs, Horses, Pigs, Rabbits, Llamas and alpacas, Birds, Pigs, and even rats.

Studies have shown that animal-assisted therapy may also decrease anxiety, sadness, and insecurity. Anxiety and mood disorders generally co-occur besides substance use disorders. When executed in a comprehensive treatment plan that addresses all of the underlying elements of addiction, animal-assisted therapy may improve rehabilitation outcomes. When patients have an unconditional friend, who does not judge them for their addiction, it becomes a priceless tool in the recovery process. Empathy, compassion, and understanding are vital for a full recovery. Given that mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety are closely connected with addiction, it is crucial to address them during the recovery process, developing a holistic, lifelong recovery.

 Just like humans, dogs react to both verbal and non-verbal communication. Patients are taught to adjust their communication styles to initiate and sustain more successful interactions with the dogs. The skills learned while communicating with therapy dogs are transferred to humans, therefore improving interactions and personal relationships.

Also, the therapy can be joined with other evidence-based treatments, like cognitive behavioral therapy or experiential therapy. Phases of treatment often include role-playing or role-reversal, accompanied by different methods, including the animal and accountability.

There are countless health benefits to owning a pet. They can increase the chances of exercise, get outside, and socialize. Frequent walking or interacting with pets can decrease blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglyceride levels. Animals can also help manage loneliness and depression by giving us companionship. Most households in America have at least one pet. 

Research shows that the relationship between people and their pets can improve fitness, lower stress, and bring overall happiness to their owners. A few of the health benefits of having a pet include Decreased blood pressure, cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, feelings of loneliness, opportunities for exercise and outdoor activities, and opportunities for socialization. 

Around 68% of U.S. households have a pet. Overall, having a pet throughout the process of drug abuse treatment it teaches responsibility Animals are living, breathing beings that require care and love. Possessing the obligation to provide for and take care of something other than oneself encourages those in recovery to think about something other than their selves. It also Builds confidence and self-worth.

 Many people who care for a pet have an increase in self-confidence. Pets also give gratitude for the tiniest gestures of love and care, which can motivate even more selfless acts from the patient in recovery. Patients also gain emotional intelligence. This is because pets respond to emotions, and being around animals can benefit people in recovery. They are eventually learning to control responses and adjust to the pet’s emotional needs instead of their own.  


The Recover is an unbiased substance abuse and mental health news provider. Helping individuals looking for the right treatment programs in their area. Also providing information on drug rehab centers for addiction recovery.

Contact: Kennedy Adams
Company: The Recover
Address: Huntington Beach, CA
Contact Number: (888) 510-3898
Email: [email protected]