The HABRI Foundation is calling for research proposals to investigate the health outcomes of pet ownership and/or animal-assisted activity or therapy, both for the people and the animals involved. To learn more, visit https://habri.org/grants/funding-opportunities/ close

 
You are here: Home / Journal Articles / Review of current evidence and future directions in animal-assisted intervention for children with autism / About

Review of current evidence and future directions in animal-assisted intervention for children with autism

By M. E. O'Haire

View Resource (HTM)

Licensed under

Category Journal Articles
Abstract

Introduction

Autism has been highlighted as a pressing public health issue that may be ameliorated through the inclusion of animals in autism treatment services, also known as animal-assisted intervention. Over the past 20 years, only a few studies have empirically examined the impact of therapeutic interactions with animals for individuals with autism. A review of the existing literature indicates that incorporating animals into autism treatment practices may provide a motivating stimulus for individuals with autism to enhance social functioning. However, more rigorous investigation is critical before widespread implementation can be adopted. In this review, I explore the current literature on animal-assisted intervention for autism, synthesise relevant findings for clinical practice and present targeted directions for future research.

Conclusion

Research suggests positive social functioning outcomes for some children with autism following human-animal interaction. The use of animal-assisted intervention and service animals appear to provide a valuable addition to current autism treatment practices and therefore are worthy of further investigation.

Date 2013
Publication Title OA Autism
Volume 1
Issue 1
Pages 6-10
ISBN/ISSN 2052-7810
Publisher OA Publishing (London)
URL http://www.oapublishinglondon.com/article/445#
Language English
Author Address School of Psychology, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia Email: maggie.ohaire@gmail.com
Additional Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

Tags
  1. Animal-assisted interventions
  2. Autism
  3. Human-animal interactions
  4. open access
  5. peer-reviewed
  6. Reviews
Badges
  1. open access
  2. peer-reviewed