Animal-Assisted Therapy for Troubled Teens

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Livia Melo Pinto


In the current world, efforts have been made towards invention and innovation of new approaches to care provision, procedures that are perceived as responses to pressure from service users. One of the approaches that have attracted attention is the use of animal-assisted therapy (AAP) among troubled teens. This paper proposes a study whose aim will be to find out the critical role that AAT plays in fostering therapeutic benefits that include reductions in psychological, emotional and behavioral problems among troubled teens. Specifically, the proposed study seeks to collect primary data and incorporate or complement it with existing scholarly contributions from secondary sources. Regarding the primary data, 150 licensed health professionals will be selected and sent questionnaires either by mail or email. With a simple random sampling technique adopted to shun possibilities of social desirability bias, specific issues that the participants will be asked to highlight include trends in AAT adoption, the relationship between AAT application and patient outcomes, and the effect of the duration of troubled teen exposure to AAT procedures on the pace of recovery. Similarly, insights will be gained from the existing health records of some of the patients who may have been admitted previously and either exposed or not exposed to the AAT procedure. As such, the participants will constitute licensed health professionals who have engaged in AAT program implementation and those who are yet to adopt the process, with inferential and descriptive statistics aiding in arriving at valid and reliable conclusions from which practical recommendations will be made. As such, it is hoped that this proposal is well placed and sets a stage from which data will be collected, analyzed and interpreted for inference provision – based on the formulated hypotheses.

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