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Donkey Assisted Therapy

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The emotional and physical benefits of companion animals are now being established in psychiatric hospitals and elderly care units and there is well-researched evidence that spending time with animals can have a direct calming influence.

They are also a focus for a child’s affection. Even the most disturbed, agitated or withdrawn child is more relaxed when stroking or talking to the donkeys. A confidence shared with a donkey has no chance of being revealed as it can be with a human.

Learning new skills

Learning new skills in a safe and caring environment means donkey assisted therapy is also fun. 

Setting simple, achievable goals at each riding session increases the motivation of the child, raising their self-esteem and confidence that is so often lacking in many of the children who first visit the centres. The act of riding also improves balance, co-ordination and dexterity for many children.
The Donkey Sanctuary's Donkey Assisted Therapy. Photo credit The Donkey Sanctuary.

How donkeys help

Donkey  brings enjoyment and pleasure into children’s lives and gives them the satisfaction that comes with the achievement of learning new skills.

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