Authors: Mihaela Indrieș1, Eva Zita Balogh2
1 Department of Educational Sciences, Faculty of Social and Human Sciences, University of Oradea
2 Psychopedagogue, Bonitas Inclusive Education Center, Oradea
Background. In the paper we tried to present a method of animal-assisted therapy for a group of 3-6 year old preschoolers. The preliminary methodological study aimed at the development of animal-assisted activities and, on the other hand, aspects of the activity, to exercise demonstrations. The aim is to present the advantages offered by dog-assisted therapy on the development of motor skills.
Aims. We assume that through dog-assisted therapy we might obtain significant results from the point of view of general motor skills in children with disabilities.
Methods. We studied research aimed at highlighting the influence of the therapy dog on children in training including recovery activities. We also drew inspiration from our own experience with therapy dog West. The sessions took place in a kindergarten group of 6 to 10 people.
Results. Most research criteria were found to be easy to use and were able to monitor changes in children’s behavior. The children uniformly showed improvements in behavior being more motivated towards the activity in the presence of the dog; attention also increased in the activities carried out in the presence of the dog.
Conclusions. The studied research and personal observations are extremely promising. It would be worth testing and evaluating the effectiveness of therapy dogs on motor activities carried out by children. For this, the present study provides good foundations both in terms of thematics and the application of observational aspects.
Key words: animal-assisted therapy, development of motor skills, development of at tention, stimulation of motivation.