"Serive" Dogs Truly Are A Man's Best Friend
Review of article by Ellie Moore
From mobility assistance to diabetic alert and response, service dogs are highly trained animals that give many benefits to individual with disabilities. Having a service dog can allow for higher self-esteem, less assistance required from others, and the ability to participate in more social events (Rodriguez, Bibbo, & O’Haire, 2019). Rodrigues, Bibbo, and O’Haire sought to explore the effects of service dogs on psychosocial health and wellbeing for individuals with physical disabilities and chronic conditions (2019). Participants were recruited from individuals waiting to receive their service dog (n=165) and individuals who had service dogs (n=214) (Rodriguez et al., 2019). Each potential participant was sent an email inviting them to participate in a 10 to 20 minute survey that could be completed over the phone, online, or by mail. The survey consisted of questions that covered topics like anger, companionship, sleep disturbance, emotional functioning, social functioning, work/school functioning, and human-animal bond. Of the participants recruited, 154 individuals participated in the surveys, 97 of those with service dogs and 57 of those from the waiting group. The results showed that having a service dog was a significant predictor of overall psychosocial health and work/school functioning, emotional functioning, and social functioning (Rodriguez et al., 2019). This study also found no significant relation to having a service dog and wellbeing, anger, companionship, or sleep disturbance (Rodriguez et al., 2019). This study suggests that individuals with physical disabilities and chronic conditions can greatly benefit from having a service dog in regards to their psychosocial health, in addition to all the other wonderful services they provide.
Rodriguez, K. E., Bibbo, J., & O’Haire, M. E. (2019). The effects of service dogs on psychosocial health and wellbeing for individuals with physical disabilities or chronic conditions. Disability and Rehabilitation,1-9. doi:10.1080/09638288.2018.1524520
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