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Guest Post: Remembering Leo Bustad

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Dr. Leo Bustad was one of the founders of Pet Partners (then called Delta Society). His influence on the field of animal-assisted interventions was major, going beyond his role in founding our organization. In this guest post, Dr. Alan Beck shares some thoughts on Dr. Bustad’s influence and his memories…

2022 Magic Award Recipients

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Since 2017, Pet Partners has offered a scholarship funded by Dr. Aubrey Fine, named the Magic Award in memory of his therapy dog Magic, to registered volunteers for use in personal/professional development in the field of AAI. In 2022, the scholarship was expanded to include members of our sister organization,…

Stories of YAYABA™ in Action

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One of the principles that makes the Pet Partners Therapy Animal Program the gold standard is YAYABA™, which stands for You Are Your Animal’s Best Advocate. YAYABA is your most important responsibility as a handler, because your animal’s welfare should always be your top priority. Practicing YAYABA includes allowing your…

A Decade with Pet Partners

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We began 2021 with an air of hope, as the development of COVID-19 vaccines offered the possibility of being able to return to more typical activities, including in-person therapy animal visits and the important work that supports those visits. Unfortunately, the rise of new COVID-19 variants and continuing high levels…

Reading at Home with We Are All Ears

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In 2020, when stay at home orders and social isolation measures were put in place to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, reading visits at schools and libraries under our Read With Me™ initiative ceased to be an option in many places. At the same time, many families were experiencing educational…
Originally published May 19, 2020; updated March 4, 2021 This post was originally published in May 2020, when we had early optimism about the possibility of returning to more typical therapy animal visits. Over the past 10 months we've seen the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic go through recurring waves…
Programs where children read to therapy animals have long been a part of AAI. Our Read With Me™ initiative gives schools, libraries, and therapy animal teams tools and resources for setting up animal-assisted reading programs onsite. But with stay at home orders and social isolation measures in place during the…
With the sudden impact of COVID-19 on the therapy animal community, Pet Partners found ourselves in a challenging situation: the love of animals was needed more than ever, but the ability to bring therapy animals to people was largely cut off. We immediately began considering the countless ways in which…
Dementia is the umbrella term for general loss of mental abilities that affects an individual’s capability to function and carry out activities of daily living. It most commonly affects older adults, but it is not a normal part of aging. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common type of dementia, characterized…
If you’re a registered Pet Partners therapy animal team in the U.S. or Canada, you know that you received a team rating when you completed your team evaluation, and that it’s listed on your acceptance letter and team ID badge. And if you’re a staff member at a facility that receives…

Traci Pryor with Frisco

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Kerri E. Rodriguez, PhD

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This post is part of a continuing series on preparing your pet for therapy animal work. Pet Partners knows that training your animal to be a part of a registered therapy animal team can feel like a very big endeavor. To make sure that preparing your animal for the world…

A Tribute to Sadie

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Press Office

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If you’re searching for a reputable program to get started with therapy animal volunteering, look no further. Pet Partners, the leading therapy animal organization in the U.S., is the gold standard for you, your animal, and the people whose lives your team will impact. 1. Top Notch Education and Evaluation…
Originally published March 2020; updated November 2020 As the world deals with the effects of COVID-19, one of the most important mitigation strategies is social distancing: having people distance and isolate themselves to help prevent spread of the virus. This important public health measure means that people are staying home…

A Tribute to Roxy

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We Are All Ears

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