Mental Health

Working On Us: Emotional Support Animals

illustration of a brain encircled by the words mental health matters

It’s week 11 of the Working on Us mental health prompt series from Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess.  Please see Beckie’s post for details on how to participate.  This week’s focus is on emotional support/therapy animals.

Prompt #1 Questions:

  1. Do you own a pet for emotional support and/or service/therapy?  I don’t think I’d say I own my munchkins specifically for a therapy role, but at the same time they’re definitely therapeutic.
  2. Is your pet a certified therapy animal?  No.
  3. What kind of pet do you own?  I have 5 guinea pigs.
  4. Do you believe that support animals truly assist those in need? Absolutely.
  5. Do you believe that any animal can be a therapy/support pet?  I think any animal that’s interactive can be an emotional support animal.  Non-interactive pets would still have an emotional benefit, but not to the same extent.

Prompt #2 Narrative:  

Describe how your pet is of support to you? EXAMPLE: Helps with anxiety, depression, PTSD, etc… (And, please… Share their name and a photo) if you desire.  

My brother got married last year, and the wedding was really stressful for me, but I brought a couple of guinea pigs tucked in my purse and they helped me get through it.

They’re great as a focus for mindfulness.  They’re also great for cuddles.  They accept me no matter what (at least as long as I feed them).  With them around, I never feel alone even though I live on my own.  Having responsibility for taking care of them is a good motivator, and they like routine just as much as I do.  And most of all, they’re just so darn cute.

guinea pig Peanut
guinea pigs Butternut and Peanut
guinea pig Casper

20 thoughts on “Working On Us: Emotional Support Animals”

  1. I love seeing your guinea pigs, so as soon as I seen you participating in this one, I thought to myself, I hope I see some photos. πŸ™‚ So I have some cuteness fix today.

    I totally agree that owning pets can be of huge benefit. All pets I have had over the years helped me in some way. I miss owning a pet right. I hope one day to be in a position again, but it won’t be anytime soon.

  2. Ashley, I know your little fur babies bring you so much joy and love. I am so thrilled you shared more pictures of them, because, heck… I can’t get enough of those sweet little faces.
    I especially love the story of you bringing them to your brothers wedding and how they kept you mindful and calm. That was a great idea, but I can only imagine all the poopy’s at the bottom of your bag. LOL!
    Thank you so very much in participating in Week #11 “Working on Us” πŸ˜πŸ’š

  3. Oh my gosh, too much adorableness!! They are so sweet and snuggly!! I love them!! And I think it’s awesome that you smuggled the snugglers into your brother’s wedding!!

  4. Awhh, you brought them to the wedding?! That’s awesome. I use to have a guinea pig in my early 20s. He was sweet but I couldn’t bring him when I moved so I had to find a good home for him.

  5. guinea pigs are the cutest! I remember at preschool we had some of those snuggly little guys. I still remember them. I am glad you have your 5 furbabies to support you through everything! <3

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