The Effects Of Animal Assisted Interventions On Children With Autism

791 Words Jul 26th, 2015 4 Pages
Animal-assisted interventions have also been proposed as a method to improve social interactions and communication skills in children with autism. Supporters of animals improving social competencies find that children have a natural connection with animals that may help to facilitate commination skills, which are often a difficult skill to target in children with ASD. Solomon (2015) advocates for the inclusion of the animal in structured interactions with the child, because “there are indications that some people diagnosed with ASD ‘are’ more companion-able and more response-able when their interactions with animals are enfolded into interactions with people” (p. 327). She describes these structured interactions for children with ASD through using questions and prompts about the animal to encourage empathic and thoughtful interactions with the animal. Solomon finds through preliminary qualitative studies that children are better able to organize interactions with animals as these are simpler and less stressful. The children she observes during these interactions often make statements that indicate a greater interpersonal understanding than in a traditional clinical interview, such as “may be he [the dog] wants to be warm” or “but they [the cats] are afraid” (Solomon, 2015, p. 335). Overall, there is limited empirical information on facilitated interactions with animals, but this pilot study prompts other researchers to perform similar research.
Other research studies…

Related Documents