A Therapy Dog is a dog that is trained to provide comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with learning difficulties. Though the use of dogs for therapy can be dated back to World War II, the regular use of therapy dogs didn’t start until 1976, when a registered nurse, Elaine Smith, started a program to train dogs to visit institutions. Currently there are over 10,000 registered therapy dogs helping over 1 million people every year in the United States.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel because of its smaller size, intelligence, and calming demeanor is ideally suited as a therapy dog. Simply speaking they love everyone and everything.
There are many members of Cavaliers Of The South that participate in therapy on a regular basis. They work in assisted living centers and retirement homes visiting seniors. They visit schools helping children with learning disabilities learn to read. They visit hospitals and rehabilitation centers helping patients with physical and occupational therapy or as companions, providing comfort to patients with life threatening illnesses.
Because of the growing interest of Cavaliers in therapy, the Cavaliers Of The South has created a network of Therapy Experts. These experts are located throughout our region and can help any interested member become involved. If you are interested in pursuing therapy for you and your cavalier, or would like more information, please find the contact closest to you. These Members have a wealth of information that they can share with you. They can link you to other local members and meet up groups that cant get you on your way to this profoundly rewarding activity with your Cavalier.