Pet Therapy at Bluebird Care Swale

We have recently held several Pet Therapy Sessions, inviting our customers and anyone else interested come along and meet our pets.

Animal-assisted therapy improves customers’ mental, physical, social and emotional functioning with the aid of animals. Much more than simply spending time with an animal, animal-assisted therapies can include walking, brushing, petting and caring for an animal, as well as processing the experience of trying to achieve a given task.

There is a strong bond between animals and people. Animals are accepting, non-threatening and non-judgemental, making it easier for people to open up. Animal therapy can release endorphins that produce a calming effect.  This can help alleviate pain, reduce stress and improve a person’s overall psychological state.  Animal Therapy is an ideal way for customers who may be less mobile to be able to interact with animals without having to care for them full-time. Some of the benefits of animal-assisted therapy include:

•    Improved fine motor skills and joint movement
•    Improved balance, improving assisted or independent movement
•    Increased focus and attention
•    Increased self-esteem and ability to care for oneself with improved social skills
•    Reduced anxiety, grief and isolation
•    Reduced Blood Pressure, depression and risk of heart attack and stroke
•    Increased trust, empathy and teamwork increasing verbal communication
•    Greater self-control
•    Enhanced problem-solving skills
•    Reduced need for medication
•    Improved social skills
•    Decreased loneliness and isolation by giving the customer a companion
•    Reducing boredom
•    Memory stimulation by comparing pets past and present
•    Improving the relationship between the customer and the healthcare provider
•    Lifts spirits and lessens depression

People with a variety of conditions can benefit from animal-assisted therapy, including:

•    Autism spectrum disorders
•    Addiction
•    Cancer, particularly those on chemotherapy
•    Heart Disease
•    Dementia
•    Developmental disorders
•    Psychiatric disorders
•    Emotional and behavioural disorders
•    Chronic pain
 All our animals are clean, vaccinated, well-trained and screened for appropriate behaviour. 


These are our lovely pets:

ROY SILVER LAKE (But you can call me Roy!)
“Hello!  My name is Roy and I am a beautiful Black Cane Corso.  I am a large dog with a big soft heart.  I like nothing more than a stroke or a cuddle, as well as food, of course! 

I have a younger brother Joey.  He is a cute Lilac French Bulldog, much smaller than me.  Joey and I love to be together snuggled up on a rug.  Joey is also a trained  Bluebird Care (Swale) Therapy Dog alongside me.  We take part in Therapy Sessions to which lots of customers and others are invited.  Hopefully, we can have the opportunity to go and visit customers in their own homes to offer them support and as many cuddles as we can manage.  You could even take us for a walk if you want to!”

Cane Corsos are also known as Italian Mastiffs, a large Italian breed of dog, for years highly valued in Italy as a companion and guard dog.
•    The Corso’s ears may be cropped or uncropped.
•    The Corso is a working dog who needs lots of mental and physical stimulation.
•    The Corso requires plenty of socialization, training and exercise to be a good companion.

LILAC STORM (but you can call me Joey!)
“Hello, my name is Joey.  I am a Lilac French Bulldog.  I live at home with my brother, Roy, who is much bigger than me, but just as soft.  We are both trained to be Therapy Dogs for Bluebird Care (Swale).  I love having Roy as my big brother as he looks after me and is always ready to play with me when I want to.  I love snuggling up with Roy on a rug to have a little rest.  Roy and I take part in Therapy Sessions with the customers of Bluebird Care (Swale).  I cannot wait for the time when Roy and I will be allowed to visit customers in their own homes to offer them support and lots of cuddles”.

The French Bulldog is a small breed of domestic dog.  They were the result of a cross between bulldog ancestors imported from England and local ratters from France.  In 2015, they were the fourth most popular AKC registered dog breed in the United Kingdom.
The French Bulldog is a pleasant, easy-care companion, who is playful, alert and affectionate.  The Frenchie gets along fairly well with strangers and other animals.  They are enthusiastic and lively, curious, sweet and absolutely hilarious with a comic personality.  They love to clown around and are bright and easy going.  They are very clean dogs and most will try to avoid puddles!


“Hey, I’m Sally and I am a pigmy Boa Constrictor.”
Usually, I would grow to about 12ft long and weigh about 15kg!  However, since I am a pigmy, I am only 45cm long.  I live in Columbian forest conditions.  I am non-venomous as I am a constrictor.


Hi.  We are Lily and Larry and we are Leopard Geckos.  We are only 3-4ins long and weigh a whole 55gms!  We store our nutrients in our tails, so the fatter, the healthier!  We live in dry sandy conditions.”
The common leopard gecko is a crepuscular, ground-dwelling lizard naturally found in the highlands of Asia and throughout Afghanistan, to parts of Northern India.  Leopard geckos can live as long as 20 years and can grow as long as 10ins in length.  Unlike other geckos, the leopard gecko doesn’t have sticky hands, so he can’t climb walls and other vertical surfaces like the many of his relatives.  The Leopard Gecko is one of only a few gecko species that has distinct outer ears and eyelids.


We will shortly have Stick Insects as well. Keep an eye on our website for more details.

Stick insects can be found everywhere in the world and make fascinating pets.  Although they aren’t cuddly like cats or goofy like dogs, stick insects can make good pets because they’re quiet and they won’t scratch your furniture or pee on your carpet!  These little fellows are collectively known as phasmids.  They range in length from a few inches long to more than a foot from head to tail.  Most 
look like twigs or leaves, allowing them to blend in with their environments and avoid predators.

If you would like to meet any of our pets, please call the Bluebird Care (Swale) office on 01795 422200 where someone will be able to give you details about our Pet Therapy Sessions dates and where they are held.