Did you know that some treatment centers offer pet friendly drug rehab programs? Awesome, right? Well, besides being awesome there are actually some pretty amazing benefits to bringing your fur baby to treatment with you.
A Pet-Friendly Drug Rehab Can Have Profound Effects on Your Emotional State
Addiction is an isolating disease and one of the most difficult things about recovery is the struggle to rebuild relationships or to start fresh ones. Having a pet with you during treatment provides you with much needed judgement-free unconditional love. Everyone needs a snuggle after a hard day and you’ve got some hard days ahead of you.
When you first arrive at any rehab center, you might feel a bit uncomfortable. It’s a new place with new people. You’re going through a lot physically, mentally, and emotionally. Having your pet with you can give you a sense of comfort in an otherwise uncomfortable situation.
Being in a new place while in such a vulnerable state is enough to make anyone homesick. When something is new to you it can take a while to feel right. Even though going home sounds like a good idea, leaving mid-treatment is counterproductive. Having your furry friend by your side allows you to have that little piece of home to set your mind and soul at ease.
There Are Countless Physical Benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy
We love animals (dogs especially) but we aren’t blinded by our love. Turns out, there are tons of well documented studies on animal assisted therapy (AAT). And it doesn’t even have to be your pet. Simply being around any animal is proven to decrease blood pressure and lower your heart rate. Animal assisted therapy been shown to:
- Reduce blood pressure
- Reduce heart rate
- Decrease reported anxiety
- Elevate mood
- Increase beta-endorphin levels
- Decrease reported feelings of tension or stress
- Stabilize mood
- Improve anger management
- Raise self esteem
- Improve frustration tolerance1
In addition, having a pet around encourages you to be more active and keeps you accountable to your recovery and overall well-being.
Pets Are the Ultimate Conversation Starter
Have you ever been stumped for what to say? Do you get all clammed up when someone asks you to tell them “a little bit about you?” When you have a go to topic picked out ahead of time it totally takes the social pressure off. Use your pet as a talking point. Talking about your love of animals is a great way to jumpstart any conversation. Even if your new friends are not animal people (and yes, there are people like this out there) it’s an opportunity to ignite a healthy and friendly debate.
You Can Be Nurturing
Before you get to rehab, the only person you’ve really been taking care of is you. And even that is debatable. You will learn so much during your first few weeks in rehab and one of the biggest things is that you can be a nurturing person. Having a pet around will prove that not only can you take care of yourself but you can keep another being alive and happy as well. This is a huge learning opportunity and a chance to prove that you can take care of someone other than yourself.
No More Excuses Not To Go To Rehab
One of the biggest reasons that people don’t go to rehab (believe us – we’re seen just about every excuse in the book) is that they have existing responsibilities that are preventing them from cutting drugs and alcohol out of their lives. For most people, this means a job or children. But for some it means their pet. When you choose a pet-friendly drug rehab this is one less thing you will have to make alternate arrangements for. One less excuse.