Animals Can Be Great Therapy

The New Year is in full swing and it is time to greet spring with a new furry friend. What is your choice of animal comfort?

It is a proven fact that animals of all shapes and sizes are sources of unconditional emotional support. With dogs, cats, horses, and birds being the most common choices, which are you most passionate about?

I have recently interviewed a few of our local animal shelters and rescues and I am pleased to say that times have changed immensely for the average shelter in a great way. One shelter in particular recently launched a Meet Your Match program intended to match new owners to their new pets. How does it work?

It features a test that involves completing an entire survey on each animal, matching the animal with different “colors” representing their various characteristics. Questions pertaining to the amount of exercise the pet requires or how mild mannered versus aggressive the pet may be help designate their traits. Then, when a family looking to adopt comes in, the shelter performs the same survey on these potential pet adopters. They ask them questions like, “Do you like to exercise or are you more of a couch potato? Are there children in your house or will the animal be left alone?” The shelter then analyzes all of the potential owners’ answers, assigning each one colors that align with their personality descriptions. Finally, once the colors have been analyzed between owner and pet, the family and the animal are matched to be great mates. I was so impressed with this method.

I was taught by my parents the value of adopting. When you adopt an animal, hopefully much like a child, it is a commitment for their life span. Just like raising our kids, it takes a lot of love, hard dedication, and training. You will be rewarded with an unconditional living member of your family.

Once you’ve adopted your new friend, what next? There are several choices you can make when deciding how you intend to raise your animal, much like your child. Time has shown that, for some people, animals have grown to play as important of a role to their owners as would an extended family member… maybe even closer. Stores sell cute clothes for pets, and even purses to carry them in for the smaller ones. Some owners’ animals eat all organic food. All of this is not to mention the recent boom of pet hotels and pet day spas containing cameras so that owners can make sure their loved ones are being taken care of with love. There are drop-off doggy day cares for the person who needs to go to work and restaurants that allow your furry friends to dine with you. There are even pet parks that are fenced off by pet sizes. Destinations like these provide a great way for our pets, and us humans, to socialize.
So if you’re looking for some pure love, look no further. Decide what animal you are most passionate about and how much time you have to dedicate to them. Know you will be choosing one of your new very best, most loyal friends.

To find out more about Kim Pagano, visit