Pet Therapy

Paws & Think’s pet therapy volunteers provide comfort and support to children and adults at a variety of venues in Central Indiana including healthcare facilities, schools, libraries, and more. Our volunteers and their therapy dogs visit Marion and the surrounding counties to provide support to those who need it most in our community.

What is Pet Therapy?

Therapy dogs are different than service dogs, emotional support dogs, and facility dogs in that their primary purpose is to provide affection and support to all different types of people, including members of the general public. A therapy dog is trained in basic obedience and must pass an evaluation to become part of a registered therapy team. Therapy dogs are not trained to assist one person with a mental or physical disability – instead, they provide pet therapy support to all different types of people in short visits to individuals or in a group setting.

Some examples:

  • Harriet and LuisChildren who are grieving the loss of someone close to them
  • Children who need a non-judgmental listener as they read in order to improve their reading skills
  • Children in hospitals who feel afraid and displaced
  • Seniors who enjoy the physical affection and social interaction of pets
  • Adults and children in physical or speech rehabilitation
  • Veterans and others with who have suffered physical and/or emotional trauma

Learn more about types of support dogs.

Paws & Think offers Animal Assisted Activity (AAA) training classes and evaluations for prospective therapy teams. If you are interested in volunteering your time along with your dog, please visit our Pet Therapy Training & Evaluations page for more information. If you don’t have a dog or your dog is not a good fit to be a therapy dog, you can still help out! Paws & Think needs volunteers to help with our training classes and evaluations.

If you would like to partner with Paws & Think to bring our pet therapy program to your venue, please email us at

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