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Belgian Sheepdog as a Therapy Dog

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Tags: Belgian Sheepdog, Working Dog, Therapy Dogs

Akc Champion Bloodlines - Adults - Pe…



Glendale, KY

French Bulldog

Although when most people think of a working dog, they tend to think of a German shepherd, or maybe a Rottweiler, but the truth is, Belgian Sheepdogs are excellent work dogs both as guide dogs for the blind, helpers for the disabled, and therapy dogs for those who need to have a canine friend to help them get through the day. Even in that respect, we often think of the smaller dogs that someone can pick up, or falls into the "lap dog" category. Though they are far from being a lap dog at their maximum weight of 60-65 pounds, they are often more gentle in temperament than the Rottweiler or German Shepherd. They tend to be less aggressive, and even though they will not fail to show aggression if they think their human is in danger, they are less likely to attack without provocation.

One advantage of using a Belgian Sheepdog as a therapy dog is their complete devotion to their families. They have the need to be around people all the time, and enjoy nothing more than being with their special human family. This makes them a perfect specimen as a therapy dog where they find themselves being lavished with attention. As people become older and their children are gone, they sometimes become depressed and feel there is nothing left now that they have no one who needs them. This is especially true of single moms or dads whether by death or divorce. They need to feel they are needed, and a dog fits the need quite well. A pet gives them someone to love, nourish, and play with in much the way they did their children when they were young. The dog cannot wait on himself, so there is someone for them to feed and water, and take care of his medical needs. Medical evidence shows that the elderly who have pets live longer than those who do not, so it makes sense that the same thing applies to those suffering from empty nest syndrome.

That doesn't mean that only empty nesters and the elderly need therapy dogs. Those who are disabled and depressed about the state of their health can also be comforted by the presence of a furry friend they can love. Even someone confined to a wheelchair can maneuver around enough to take care of a pet provided everything is kept within reach. Although the owners of therapy dogs may not be able to exercise a Belgian Sheepdog to the degree that someone else could, that does not mean they are unable to take him into the back yard for a romp or provide equipment for agility exercises. On the other hand, your dog may be content to sit at your feet when you are there alone because he is doing what he enjoys doing best, taking care of the human who needs him. He is happy to be assisting you, and you have someone on which to lavish attention.

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Belgian Sheepdog as a Therapy Dog
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