Meet Flower IV, our Facility Dog from Canine Companions for Independence

The Utah Healing Center is thrilled to introduce Flower IV.

A Facility Dog that was donated to our office from

Canine Companions for Independence (CCI)

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We’ll let CCI explain their mission in their own words:

“Founded in 1975, Canine Companions for Independence® is a non-profit organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by providing highly trained assistance dogs and ongoing support to ensure quality partnerships.

“The assistance dogs we breed, raise and train aren’t just the ears, hands and legs of their human partners. They’re also goodwill ambassadors and often, their best friends. They open up new opportunities and new possibilities and spread incredible joy. We unite people with dogs in a powerful program that leads to greater independence and confidence.” http://www.cci.org/about/who-we-are.html

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CCI trains four types of assistance dogs to have a variety of skills to work with diverse populations.

  • Service dogs
    • Assist adults with physical disabilities by performing daily tasks.
  • Hearing dogs
    • Alert their partners, who are deaf and hard of hearing, to important sounds.
  • Facility dogs
    • Work with clients with special needs in a visitation, education, criminal justice or health care setting.
  • Skilled companions
    • Enhance independence for children and adults with physical, cognitive and developmental disabilities.

For more information about CCI go to www.cci.org

A Little About Flower IV

Utah Healing Center’s CCI facility dog, Flower IV, is specifically trained to work with children, adolescents, and adults who are navigating mental health challenges.

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  • Flower is a Labrador and Golden Retriever Cross,
  • Flower is famous for cuddling, kindness, calm, and happy nature, as well as its ability to provide companionship and aid.
  • Flower has 3 1/2 years of experience as a service dog. In those years, she has helped hundreds of clients reach their treatment goals.
  • Flower has extensive experience working with clients dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, and anxiety.
  • Flower is trained to help you focus in the present helping client’s to become more grounded and less stressed
  • Flower is trained in over 40 commands to help client engage in a manner that provides a unique therapeutic experience
  • Flower is continually learning new therapeutic activities from her partner and Utah Healing Center’s Administrative Director, Janelle Nimer.

How does animal-assisted therapy make a difference for you?

Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT) has been shown to impact a series of hormones including stimulating the ‘love hormone’ oxytocin, and lowering the stress related hormones including cortisol. Please see the attached articles (one was even written by our own Administrative Director, Janelle Nimer, PhD, LCSW) to learn about the benefits of AAT.

Janelle Nimer & Brad Lundahl (2007) Animal-Assisted Therapy: A MetaAnalysis, Anthrozoös, 20:3, 225-238. 2007 Nimer Lundahl AAT Meta

Andrea Beetz, Kerstin Uvnäs-Moberg, Henri Julius, and Kurt Kotrschal (2012) Psychosocial and psychophysiological effects of human-animal interactions: the possible role of oxytocin. Frontiers in Psychology. Beetz 2012 AAT

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So how does this AAT actually work?

AAT sessions with Flower are the standard 50 minutes, during which you may incorporate AAT with mindfulness, EMDR, play therapy, DBT, TF-CBT, etc. Flower will expand your usual discussions with Janelle Nimer, PhD, LCSW or Janet Wilson, LCSW

There is no extra charge for including Flower in your sessions. (She is quite happy being rewarded with rubs!)

Just let us know at the time of booking if you would like to have Flower included in your sessions, and if the therapist feels it is a good fit, we will be sure to have her present – waiting for you with an eager tail wag!

For more information about having Flower join your therapy sessions, contact the Utah Healing Center at 801-266-4643.

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