Harvey Therapy Dog

July 3, 2020

 

At 10 weeks of age, puppy Harvey is the youngest team member at Integrated Disability Support Service in Bundaberg.

But there are a couple of differences between Harvey and others who work there. Harvey has four legs, a wagging tail and is the organisation’s therapy dog.

Director at Integrated Disability Support Service in Bundaberg, Kahli Olesen, said Harvey has been a hit with clients and residents.

“Harvey has been with us at IDSS for a week and he is off to the first stages of training next month,” Kahli said.

“After that he will go into a therapy puppy training program, which will take about 12-18 months before he is fully qualified.

“Right now, he is being a good little puppy and giving puppy support to everyone who walks through our doors.”

The brown boisterous pup provides emotional support, an adorable puppy face, and two floppy ears to listen to clients, residents and staff.

“He is quite calming for many of our residents and they find a lot of joy in playing with him and patting him, and because he is so soft and fluffy it’s fantastic for our clients who have anxiety or stress related conditions, because patting a dog has been shown to be particularly therapeutic,” Kahli said.

Integrated Disability Support Service is a registered NDIS provider which offers services for children and adults and provides continuous, reliable support to those isolated and vulnerable.

Kahli said IDSS jumped on the idea with research showing therapy dogs can reduce stress and provide a sense of connection in difficult situations.

“Harvey is a Tamaruke and they are specifically bred as therapy and assistance animals; they’re hypoallergenic, they don’t shed, well-tempered and very intelligent and easily trained,” Kahli said.

“I have a background in psychiatric nursing and as part of that we had animal therapy, so as IDSS grew we identified a need for it here.

“Everyone knows that when you have a pet it reduces your anxiety, your stress and it has a lot of psycho physiological effects on the body, so it reduces all those cortisol levels and releases happy endorphins.”

“In all the unknown of COVID, we thought it was a great opportunity for our residents to have something in their lives that is a constant, and animals definitely offer that.”

  • Most Recent News

    Big Dogs Need Owners

    October 9, 2020

    When the shutdown orders took full effect, it became nearly impossible to find a small dog available for adoption as Southlanders sought furry companions. In many Southland shelters, only larger breeds remained available for adoption. Now Los Angeles Animal Service is touting the joys of big dogs while offering discounted adoption fees for larger breeds […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Walkathon

    October 9, 2020

    On Saturday, October 3, hundreds of walkers from across 15 states joined the path to bettering the world for children with autism and their families as part of BluePath Service Dogs’ fourth annual walkathon. The family-friendly fundraiser – this year held virtually – raised more than $120,000 to further BluePath’s mission of providing autism service […]

    Read more

    Service Dog In The Marching Band

    October 9, 2020

    In a year that is anything but normal, the Jones College Maroon Typhoon Marching Band has welcomed its first known service dog member this fall. Laurie, a 3-year-old golden retriever, is baritone saxophone player Sara-Beth McKellar’s service dog. The Vicksburg native was diagnosed with epilepsy as a sophomore in high school after her first seizure. […]

    Read more

    Church Blesses Animals

    October 9, 2020

    St. Mary’s Church of the Immaculate Conception in Port Jervis hosted a special outdoor service last Sunday afternoon to bless the community’s pets, animals and other living creatures. In keeping with current pandemic rules, pet owners wore masks, remained distant, and took part in praying for dogs, cats, turtles, and other pets and animals around […]

    Read more

    Police Welcomes New Canine

    October 9, 2020

    Young Kingston Police service dog Bask may look small, but his handler says his training and energy are proving that he’s up to fill the shoes of his predecessor. “I think he’s going to be a great little dog,” Const. Jeff Dickson said, looking down at his new partner. A partner that, wearing the right […]

    Read more

    Dog Park For Travelers

    October 9, 2020

    St. Petersburg is widely recognized as a dog-friendly city, and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport is making sure its four-legged visitors and their humans feel welcome by rolling out the artificial turf carpet. With the completion of the airport’s parking and roadway project – part of a series of multi-million dollar improvements at the airport over the […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Helps Firefighters

    October 9, 2020

    Firefighters battling the Archie Creek and Thielsen fires have had some long, exhausting days. But for some, their troubles seemed to melt away once they got back to camp. Why? Meet Ralph Colombo. He hauls oversize loads. And joining Ralph is his service dog, Cowboy – the morale boosting, firefighting puppy. “He just keeps my […]

    Read more

    Pet Therapy Program

    October 9, 2020

    Saturday, October 10 is World Mental Health Day, which this year has a new sense of urgency for many. Covid-19 has taken a mental and emotional toll on healthcare workers across the U.S but there is a program boosting the spirits of doctors and nurses on the frontlines. At UC Irvine Medical Center in Southern […]

    Read more

    A Service Dogs Place

    October 9, 2020

    A new Pineville nonprofit that helps people with disabilities obtain service dogs has made its first match. The Saber Life Foundation was started in March by Danea Key and her husband Joel. They provide people with trained service dogs, paying 51 percent of the cost, with the client paying the other 49 percent. Service dogs […]

    Read more

    Dog Beating Cancer

    October 9, 2020

    A little over a year after a local dog was given only a few months to live after being diagnosed with bone cancer, she is still in remission and will be celebrated her twelfth birthday this month. Cocoa has been with her owner, Bucyrus resident Christie Auck, since she was nine-weeks-old. “On Aug. 18, 2019, […]

    Read more

    More Recent News