Some autistic children helped by dogs, NYTimes article
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Thread: Some autistic children helped by dogs, NYTimes article

  1. #1
    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultSome autistic children helped by dogs, NYTimes article

    From today's NY Times:

    When Chad, a yellow Labrador retriever, moved in with Claire Vaccaro’s
    family in Manhattan last spring, he already had an important role. As
    an autism service dog, he was joining the family to help protect
    Ms. Vaccaro’s 11-year-old son, Milo — especially in public, where he
    often had tantrums or tried to run away.

    Like many companion animals, whether service dogs or pets, Chad had
    an immediate effect — the kind of effect that is noticeable but has
    yet to be fully understood through scientific study. And it went beyond
    the tether that connects dog and boy in public.

    For the rest of this NY Times article, click on

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/06/health/06pets.html?em


    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

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    AngusFangus is offline Senior Member
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    “The human-animal bond bypasses the intellect and goes straight to the heart and emotions and nurtures us in ways that nothing else can,” said Karin Winegar, whose book “Saved: Rescued Animals and the Lives They Transform” (Da Capo, 2008) chronicles human-animal interactions. “We’ve seen this from coast to coast, whether it’s disabled children at a riding center in California or a nursing home in Minnesota, where a woman with Alzheimer’s could not recognize her husband but she could recognize their beloved dog.”
    Oh...that brought a tear to my eye.

    Another great link for my dog club newsletter Bob! Thanks for posting!

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    Lily is offline Member
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    Lily's "mother" is a teacher in a classroom for children with Autism and they have a therapy dog come in. It really is a tremendous assistance and motivation for the children. When Lily gets a little older and calmer, we would love for her to be a certified therapy dog.
    Lily at 5 months old at Wrightsville Beach, NC

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    Dogs are so wonderful and help my daughter who has fetal alcohol syndrome. Anytime she is frustrated or ready to tantrum, Kody was always there to help her through it. It was amazing to see him go up to her and nuzzle her. He always had a calming effect on her. We are hoping for the same with our puppy Riley, but right now it has the opposite effect on her. She gets excited right with him. I work with cognitively impaired adults and we have a yellow lab therapy dog that helps out during workouts, and again nothing but positive outcomes for all involved. I hope we see more of them in the community.

    Robin

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    Canula2000 is offline Senior Member
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    my youngest is on the autism spectrum, thankfully mild but he adores the dogs. In the morning he sneaks outside to be with them. (I leave them outside while I clean up breakfast)

    "Every boy should have two things: a dog, and a mother willing to let him have one"
    - Anonymous

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    My brother had a girlfriend that had an autistic child and it was amazing to see how she reacted to Maggie. This little girl would have nothing to do with me or anyone for that matter, but when I brought Maggie around, she would run up to her and play with her and attempt to talk to her (in her own way). She was 5 years old. She would spend 2 hours calmly with her just following her around or playing catch with her and even just petting her. This is something that she would not do with people. She usually runs around frantically and will never make eye contact with you or even attempt to make conversation with you. She never hugs people or show emotion to people, but she will hug Maggie and laugh. It's amazing to watch.

    Well, I'm sorry to say that they broke up and now the little girl is not doing well. I have heard from the mother and she says that the little girl is having to be on more drugs and she is not responding very well. I told her to get a dog and she said that she can't handle a child how can she handle a dog. She is thinking about taking her to the dog park. I told her that is a bad idea. She needs to talk to a doctor about therapy dogs. Someone that has one that they can take her to.

    Thanks for listening. I feel so bad for her. The mother isn't much help. I think she is on drugs and alcohol.
    To err is human, to forgive, canine.

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    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    There's a lot of new research going on about various aspects of the human-dog symbiotic relationship -- this article mentions some.

    The currently most favored thinking about the evolution of dogs is that they're descended from wolves which scavenged garbage from the outskirts of human hunting and gathering settlements. Those wolves which were friendlier (less scared of people) spent more time around peeps and soon evolved into something approaching, more like, an early form of the domestic dog.

    Dogs and people soon formed a symbiotic relationship -- dogs helping with hunting, warning of dangers and getting food from people in return.

    But there is such a huge magnetic attraction between most dogs and most kids that I'm convinced eventually that dog-kid bond will be a piece of the final theory on the evolution of the domestic dog.

    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

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    Bob this is so interesting, I teach in a special school here in England and as most of you will know Jed is a registered Therapy dog who accompanies me into school each and every Thursday.

    My head teacher or principal asked me before the summer break if I would file a research project during September and October, taking 6 children, each with different educational needs, syndromes, behaviours and approaches and over a six week period monitor their responses to Jed.

    This week is week 4 and already in that short time I am noticing huge improvements, I have one little guy who is so timid, and lacking in self esteem, his voice is barely a whisper and yet when he sees Jed his eyes twinkle and I make a huge thing that he is the chosen one to come out of class with me to come and work with Jed, his face beams as he holds Jed's leash down the corridor.

    Last week I had him giving Jed commands like "sit" and "down", I said you need to use your biggest voice and although still quite quiet, when Jed responded and I praised them both it brought a lump to my throat to see the look of shear pride in that kids face, like he was saying "I did that".

    My project makes for a good read IMO and I am looking forward to it's completion and it's final conclusions.

    "some days you are the dog, some days you are the tree!"
    Kate mom to Jed Jasmine and Joelly
    http://www.glosmerelabradors.co.uk/#

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