The Healing Power of Dolphins with Eating Disorders Clients
I have never met a Victorian client who didn’t LOVE animals!
Dogs, cats, horses, bird- the women are obsessed. Many request the San Diego
Zoo or Santa Ana Zoo for our day trips. As well many choose to volunteer their
time at local animal hospitals while they are in our step down program, Patrice
House. Our ladies love animals! Research shows this might not be a coincidence.
A recent study by the University of München in Germany on animal-assisted
therapy with dolphins for eating disorders clients produced positive results. The
pilot study examined a dolphin assisted therapy for patients with eating
disorder. 25 patients received treatment consisting of:
Cognitive behavioral therapy
These clients were compared to a control group of 7 clients
with standard behavioral therapy program. Three months after the treatment only
the patients in the dolphin therapy group showed a stable decrease in their
overall psycho-social behaviors while
both groups had significant improvement of eating behavior. These results are
the first to show that dolphin-assisted therapy is an effective tool in the
treatment of eating disorders and is of special use in improving psycho-social
variables like depression and somatization. Further research is necessary to
further observe the long-term outcome of the dolphin therapy approach on
patients with eating disorders.
Now we just need to play a day trip to Sea World in San