Love your canine assistant

Jennifer Arnold, founder of Canine Assistants teaches us that pure love motivates a trained service dog to perform tasks for his person.  Dogs depend on humans for their survival.  The loving relationship between dog and person is key to all other benefits that derive from that relationship.

Canine Assistants are dogs, bred at the farm and trained for 18 months.  Twice a month, Canine Assistants holds ‘dog camp’ to pair up each trained dog with a person/recipient.  Matching a dog to a person is much like courtship.  The dog actually chooses the person.  For two weeks the person learns about his dog as the loving bond is formed.

Little girl in wheel chair with her canine assistant

Little girl in wheel chair with her canine assistant

If you are a parent with a child who has special needs, you might consider getting her a service dog.  The child/dog relationship extends beyond just meeting physical needs.  Consider emotional, and social benefits as well.  A person who treats a dog with loving care generally will extend that behavior and attitude towards other people.

If you have a story about a dog and a special child, I would love to hear from you to share your story here.


About Emily Lauren

Jenny Clark, OTR/L, BCP (AOTA Board Certification in Pediatrics), is a licensed pediatric occupational therapist with over 22 years experience working as a school-based occupational therapist, independent contractor for early intervention services, private practitioner, speaker, consultant, author, and inventor. Jenny currently owns a pediatric therapy private practice, Jenny’s Kids, Inc. Jenny Clark Jenny is the author of the best-selling book on sensory processing entitled Learn to Move, Move to Learn: Sensorimotor Early Childhood Activity Themes(AAPC 2004), (Starter Kit available) More recently Ms Clark has written a sequel Learn to Move, Moving Up! Sensorimotor Elementary School Activity Themes (AAPC 2009). In addition, she has published two DVD’s Learn to Move: Dinosaurs (AAPC 2005), a companion to her first book, and Sensory Processing Disorder Kit: Simulations and Solutions for Parents, Teachers, and Therapists (AAPC 2006), which won the 2007 media in excellence video award from Autism Society of America. Jenny’s newest publication is a music CD, Sing, Move, Learn (AAPC 2010), which accompanies the songs in her first book. Ms. Clark is a contributing author for the book Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Handbook for Parents and Professionals (Greenwood Publishing Group 2007), as well as a chapter author for Autism Spectrum Disorders: Foundations, Characteristics, and Effective Strategies. (Pearson Publishing 2011 by Boutot & Myles). Jenny is the inventor of the Patent-Pending “Weigh” Cool Bracelet. Jenny has spoken both nationally and internationally on a variety of topics, including sensory integration/processing. She received her bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy and graduated with distinction from the University of Kansas.
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