Animal assisted wellness is a new online program being offered by Lakeland College.
The program will train professionals on how to incorporate animals into their line of work for many various reasons. The certificate program will focus on the animal-human bond, animal assisted interventions, animal welfare and health and wellness.
Chair of Human Services Joanne McDonald said there is no other program like this in Canada and it will provide foundational knowledge with hands-on learning opportunities in order to integrate best practices for both animals and people.
The program is designed by human services and agricultural sciences faculty at Lakeland, along with the Dreamcatcher Animal Assisted Wellness Academy. Students will learn how to identify behaviours that are indicators of stress for animals, as well as identifying health risks for both animals and people.
Agricultural Sciences Instructor Dr. Robyn Rodgers says they have had a wide range of interest from current students for this type of training and the program will offer skills that are needed by the human services industry.
The program will be offered in the fall and people interested can start applying.