Last Updated on May 3, 2023 by keno
Rabbits are beneficial and are used as therapy animals. Animal-assisted therapy may vary depending on each patient’s unique needs. Some of the benefits associated with rabbit therapy include social development skills, companionship, and improved self-esteem. On the other hand, rabbit therapy is helpful in improving mobility and flexibility for patients suffering from physical challenges. This article looks at the benefits of keeping rabbits for therapy and what settings they’re mainly used in.
1. Rabbits are calm and soothing pets
One advantage of keeping rabbits as therapy animals is their calm temperament which makes interacting with them appealing. A bunny’s soothing nature is therapeutic in the sense that, they help reduce stress and anxiety levels. As a result, this helps to improve a person’s mental state and overall well-being.
2. Therapy rabbits are good companions
Since rabbits are naturally affectionate animals, they make great companions, especially for individuals dealing with loneliness or in isolation. Research has shown that interacting with a rabbit tends to reduce stress and anxiety for people with mental health issues. In other words, interacting with rabbits helps to provide comfort and a sense of belonging to those in therapy. As a result, keeping rabbits as companions has a positive impact on an individual mental state.
3. Rabbits provide emotional support
Rabbits are good at providing emotional support since they’re usually calm and affectionate animals. For example, individuals suffering from PTSD will benefit from handling a docile and relaxed rabbit. On the other hand, petting a calm purring bunny can have a healing effect on individuals suffering from anxiety. However, it’s worth pointing out that prior to a rabbit being used as an emotional support animal, it’ll need to be certified by a licensed therapist or psychologist.
4. Bunnies are trainable
Just like cats and dogs, rabbits are trainable and may learn basic commands as a result making them good therapy animals. Not only can rabbits learn to use the litter box, but they can also be taught basic commands such as to come or sit when instructed to. A rabbit needs treats or positive reinforcement during training and they may even perform tricks such as spin, high five, or jumping on command.
The different rabbit therapeutic settings
Bunnies can be used for therapy in various settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, and learning institutions. They basically provide comfort and support for individuals who may be in isolation or those who may be suffering from mental health issues.
1. Therapy rabbits in hospitals
Patients experiencing stress and anxiety may get a sense of relief through interacting with a therapy rabbit. This is mainly because therapy animals more so rabbits provide a comforting effect and quite often provide patients with a sense of normalcy. This in turn helps to improve their overall well-being.
2. Therapy bunnies in nursing homes
Therapy rabbits can also be used in a nursing home setting mainly because they provide companionship for individuals who are lonely and in isolation. On top of providing good company, therapy bunnies in nursing homes can also help improve memory loss or other cognitive health issues through consistent interaction and general care of a rabbit.
3. Rabbits for therapy in learning institutions
Lastly, therapy rabbits are useful in learning institutions with students with special needs or those suffering from anxiety. The soothing and calming effect of rabbits essentially helps to keep them relaxed and also helps improve their focus more through interacting with and taking care of their favorite pet. On top of that, therapy rabbits can also help provide companionship for students who may be struggling with socialization.
Keeping rabbits for therapy has numerous advantages, especially for individuals who are in need of companionship, comfort, and support. Additionally, a rabbit’s low maintenance, gentle nature and the ability to train them essentially make bunnies a great choice for therapy animals.