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Animal-Assisted Therapy and Developmental Disorders

Author(s): Gladys Malafaia, Sofia Santos and Pedro Morato

Pp: 135-149 (15)

DOI: 10.2174/9789811446771120010011

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


For the last few years, neurosciences has been focusing its research on analysing the structures and processes behind Animal-Assisted Therapies (AAT) and their effects on persons with neurodevelopmental disorders. The aim of this study is to present an overview of the main evidence-based effects of AAT in the promotion of skills, health-related issues, and well-being of persons with neurodevelopmental disorders. For this matter, the main theories of AAT effects will be approached. In conclusion, animal-human interaction characteristics and how this relationship may compensate deficits and promote functional competences will be described.

Keywords: Animal-assisted therapy, Attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, Autism, Developmental disorders, Health, Learning disability, Well-being.

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