Pets As Therapy is a national charity that was founded in 1983 by Lesley Scott-Ordish, a dog owner and passionate volunteer who understood the amazing bond between humans and animals. Today our vision is to ensure that everyone in the UK, no matter their circumstances, has access to the companionship of a friendly pet.
We strive to enhance health and wellbeing in the community through the visits of dedicated volunteers with their temperament assessed pets. We have over 4,000 volunteers who provide a visiting service in hospitals, hospices, residential nursing homes, day care centres, mainstream and special needs schools, prisons and other establishments across the UK.
Therapeutic visits by PAT Teams can bring comfort and companionship to people living in local communities who may feel isolated and lonely, help young people to improve their literacy and concentration in the classroom and can aid a patient's recovery, rehabilitation and help improve mental health and wellbeing.
Pets As Therapy endeavours to visit and help wherever there is a need for our volunteering service. We believe:
- Those in care should be able to maintain a relationship with a pet.
- Everyone with a mental or physical health problem should have access to a pet if they wish.
- Every child has the right to leave school achieving their reading level potential.
- Every child with special needs should have the opportunity to interact with a pet and develop a bond if they wish.
- Those with memory problems should be shown dignity and respect and encouraged to retell stories of pets from their past.
- People in prison should be given the same benefits as other service users — dogs provide non-judgemental positive regard to all.
- People at the end of their live should have access to a pet if that is their wish.