Humans benefit greatly from the companionship of a pet. An animal in the life of a senior can give them new meaning and improve their well-being, so it is important for seniors to have a pet in their living environment.
Fortunately, not many senior living communities are not allowed to have their pets with them and that is where Scatter Joy Acres brings our animals in for seniors to interact with.
For seniors, the benefits of a furry companion can be life-changing. Walking a dog is great cardiovascular exercise, but just the simple act of caring for a pet-petting, brushing, feeding-provides both mild activity and a means to stay engaged with the world. Pets can make the elderly feel needed, and that feeling can translate into a greater sense of purpose and self-worth. During what can be a lonely time of life, the unconditional love of a cherished dog, goat, llama or donkey can be a bridge to more socialization with others, lowered stress, mental stimulation and a renewed interest in life.
Veterans are often seen as hero's but are very much an underserved population. Upon returning from combat, many soldiers experience symptoms of mental illness such as post-tramatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, and addictions. Tramatic brain injuries (TBI) often occurs with mental illness and exacerbate symptoms. Veterans face and increased risk of violence, homelessness, often due to untreated mental illness. The effects of symptoms affect not only the veteran but relationships with others. Even with so many veterans in need of treatment, dew actually recieve help for mental illness due to stigma or limited accessibility of resources. The proposed interventions including social learning theroy and animal assisted therapy (AAT) as a mean of providing education, changing sterotypes, reducing stigma, and encouraging change from non-judgmental helpers(ie animals). With training and treatment it is hoped that veterans' symtoms will be alleviated and healthier lives can become reality.
We not only work with the Veteran we work with family members as well. The veteran who has returned home is not the same person and children and spouses are also affected by this change.