For some people with cerebral palsy and other motor control diseases, a service animal may be just what the doctor ordered. WBNG explains.
The story talks about several people who use animal companions to help them cope with the physical and emotional needs of their disabilities. One of the people mentioned, James, has cerebral palsy.
He has taken up horseback riding as a way to improve his balance and motor control. He’s been doing it since he was four. His mom says that the more he rides the better his balance and ability to walk improve. The movements of the horse strengthen all of his muscles.
Another person in the story was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. She got a service dog through Canine Companions for Independence. Dogs help her retrieve items and open doors, but they also provide emotional support.
Children born with cerebral palsy, should they live long enough, will become adults with the disease. Society will demand a certain level of independence from them. Service animals can help people with CP and other serious diseases function more independently.
However, getting a service animal is expensive. Unlike a normal pet or even a therapy dog, service animals have to undergo strict training to be certified as one.