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Obtaining Animal Assisted Therapy for Geriatric Psychiatry Patients

Karen Dong

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School: University of Pennsylvania
Internship Track: Applied Medicine
Year 2018
Mentor: Tria O'Maille, MA-BC-DMT
Co-Mentor(s): Sarah McLean, MT-BC; Samantha Caster, CTRS
Department(s): Behavioral Medicine
Abstract: Animal-assisted therapy has been observed to be a positive influence on patients with aggressive tendencies and those with memory issues. Combined with expressive therapy in a group setting, animal-assisted therapy is particularly useful for elderly patients with dementia. Because of the benefits of animal-assisted therapy for patients, it was concluded from this project that the Cleveland Clinic could make a bigger effort to provide access to trained animals through their many Volunteer Services departments.