Pet therapy, or animal-assisted therapy, is one of the treatment modalities offered at Sunrise House Treatment Center, and was the subject of a feature story in the publication Pet Guide. Sunrise House began incorporating pet therapy as a complement to traditional treatment types earlier this year. The benefits of pet exposure have been noted in many areas and was included as an option.
As explained by Jim Zuravnsky, interim CEO of Sunrise House, the patients’ interaction with dogs increase the levels of two specific hormones: dopamine and oxytocin. Patients previously turned to substances to raise their dopamine levels, but by having them interact with the therapy dogs, they are learning a new way to seek a dopamine increase that does not involve a substance. Thus far, patients have responded very well to the program and have emerged inspired, motivated and reinvigorated about their treatment.
The modality has been a success at Sunrise House, and Jim believes it will become more mainstream as we continue to discover its benefits.
To read the entire piece, visit Pet Guide.