I was napping on the couch with an ear open to the news when I heard the news person say that dogs are good at helping people who suffer from depression. That's not news. I've known that forever.
Our friends Niles and Caber are certified Therapy Dogs. They visit people in nursing homes or hospitals and help them be not sad.
Harriet is another friend of ours who helps her Mom be able to go to work and not be afraid to leave the house.
You might have read the story about Charlotte, the dog who helped her Dad, a disabled veteran, get a job. He is a good worker but he has a sickness that make it difficult for him to be with people. Charlotte is his Service dog whose job it is to help her Dad deal with his problem.
Lowe's saw that her Dad would be a good worker and hired Charlotte so she could go to work with him and help him not be anxious. Charlotte even gets to wear a vest like all the human workers!
People who have depression or anxiety have a hard time leaving their house because they get scared.
Certified Therapy or Service dogs, like all dogs, give their humans unconditional love. They understand when their humans are very sad and give them lots of cuddles and kisses. They don't say things like “Get over it” or “Snap out of it”. Dogs don't judge, they just love their humans. More and more studies are showing that the unconditional love a dog gives can make a big difference in the life of a person who suffers from depression.
I help Mom when she gets sad but dogs like Niles, Caber and Harriet have extra special training. Dogs can be trained to help people who suffer from things like Bipolar Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Anxiety or even Schizophrenia.
So, the next time your human is feeling sad, cuddle up and give them kisses. You'll be surprised at how fast they get happy again. And if you know someone who has a serious illness like those I talked about, tell them there are organizations that can help them find a specially trained dog to make their life less stressful and easier to deal with.
P.S. Blatant self-promotion. I know what would help me get unsad, a new toy like the ones you find in our extra special pet gift baskets. See for yourself at pawpalsboutique.com