Launch day for Carmarthenshire Therapy Dogs
Some 40 dogs and their owners were barking mad for the launch of Carmarthenshire Therapy Dogs.
They ranged from sit-in-a-tea-cup 7-month-old Chihuahua called Lola weighing a few ounces to a nine-stone Bernese Mountain Dog called Layla.
Carmarthenshire council third sector broker Sue Smith said the enthusiasm of the volunteers and health professionals attending the event at Newton House, Dinefwr Park, Llandeilo, had been really inspiring.
She said: “The dogs worked their magic on all who attended the launch with many smiles and hugs.
“I am looking forward to seeing these wonderful dogs and their owners starting visiting the socially isolated and lonely in our communities. They can make such a difference to people lives.”
Ten owners with their dogs showed an interest in signing up or leaning more about becoming part of the county’s therapy dog’s team.
They watched videos and clips of therapy dogs in action and heard from people who had been sharing the love of their pets and supporting the “canine charter for human health learning that dogs can help treat depression and improve mental well being.
Organisations whose clients benefit from therapy dogs include RSVP, Macmillian, Red Cross and the Alzheimer’s Society who all agreed the quality of potential volunteers had been exceptional.
Mrs Smith said anyone can volunteer or become a befriender in their community. “There is unquestionable evidence to show the therapeutic value of cuddling and petting a receptive dog.
“It has amazing benefits for those unable to own a dog themselves.
“There are opportunities for all prepared to share the love of their pet dogs to visit residential homes or even people in their own homes, schools, hospices or hospitals.
Mrs Smith said anyone with a calm natured dog would be welcome to get in touch Sue can be contacted at 01269-830061 or are firstname.lastname@example.org