12/29– Canine companions are being used to help treat victims of drug abuse in rehabilitation centers, according to World Crunch. The ideology behind this furry practice stems in response to a frequent sense of isolation, loneliness, and a blatant refusal to accept treatment among a majority of weary patients. The Schloss Tessin center, an institution of canine therapy in Germany, contends that it is in the best interest of patients to receive continual support, and that this support may not be of human origin.
The head psychiatrist of Schloss Tessin center professes innumerable benefits to patients bestowed by their canine wards, “Many addicts have broken off all social contact, [and] the central focus of their life became consuming drugs- everything revolved around getting hold of heroin, cocaine, hash, crystal meth, or other substances. So, relationships with family and friends went by the wayside and the connection to their dog is often the only relationship that survives.”
Foremost, including dogs in drug rehabilitation treatment introduces necessary structure during the recovery process. Additionally, canines offer companionship and ensue a sense of responsibility, loyalty, and empathy- traits that may become diminished to those whose lives have been ravished by addiction.
The usage of dogs reestablish core values of service and teamwork, and help to socialize otherwise isolated individuals. Conversely, canines provide patients with a constant presence, and a source of genuine love and entertainment- as to reestablish working relationships slowly.
Clients experience lower levels of anxiety and depression in the presence of animals, and through newly formed, blithe relationships, patients begin to feel a sense of self worth. Companion animals bestow their human partners with a sense of revitalized purpose- a key element to stave off relapses.