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 Canine Therapy in Drug Rehab 
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Post Canine Therapy in Drug Rehab
Canine Therapy in Drug Rehab
by: Jane Derry

Canine Therapy is nothing new. Humans and their dogs have been loving and nurturing each other since the first abandoned wolf puppy was adopted by our ancient foreparents. Our relationship with each other has evolved collectively as two species, and as intimately as Travis and Old Yeller. The only thing new about Canine Therapy is calling it Canine Therapy.

Addiction is all about self. Self-absorption, self-pity, self-seeking, self-delusion and self-will are hallmarks of the addict in active addiction. When people come to our addiction treatment facility they are wrapped up in themselves into a pretty small package. Often what first begins to pull away the packing tape is our Canine Therapist, epitomizing the Labrador Retreiver dog, Cocoa.

Cocoa, often referred to as the Wonder Recovery Dog, does work wonders. And he loves his job. Having a joyous dog around cannot help but pull a sick and twisted person affected by the disease of addiction out of themselves, even if just for a moment. Having another sentient being to care for and care about is often the start of healing. Many people, hurt by other people, and are very distrustful. They often start the healing process by sharing their secrets and pain with Cocoa, who listens well, and never gives verbal advice or judgement. This is a step towards allowing themselves to being vulnerable enough to share this pain with the facilitators and the rest of the (human) group.

A big part of recovery is learning to live in the present moment, completely experiencing the now. Regretful of the past, and fearful of the future, is how most people suffering from the disease of addiction live. A dog is always in the present, and Cocoa role models for the guests what living in the moment means. He never appears to be worried about yesterday or concerned about tomorrow. He is just pure love, radiating acceptance and peace.

These are just a couple of the thousands of benefits of Canine Therapy in Drug Rehab. Watch for more of my articles describing Cocoa's work, and how a dog can help your loved one in recovery.

My name is Jane Derry, and you can see more about Cocoa and the work we do at

Rethinking Rehab. Addiction recovery, it is not what you think. A Home Away Retreat is a unique opportunity for people in early sobriety to heal, and learn the tools to live the life they desire and deserve, sober.

About The Author
Jane Derry - General Manager and Spiritual Counsellor

Jane's Mission: Through my commitment to live by spiritual principles, it is my intention to model and inspire hope and encouragement to people, especially to those suffering from the disease of addiction. I strive to cultivate a nurturing, safe, non-judgmental and inclusive environment for guests to explore their own spiritual beliefs. In this atmosphere of sincerity, acceptance, compassion and faith, my mission is to provide leadership that fosters individual healing through spiritual exploration and development.

Jane's personal, educational, and vocational backgrounds have well prepared her for her role as Spiritual Counsellor at A Home Away Retreat in Kelowna, British Columbia ( Following careers in the technologies of animal health and pharmacy, her personal spiritual journey awoke a calling to explore her understanding of humankind's conception of and relation to Spirit. A pursuit to study world scriptures and spiritual traditions led her to Augustana University College, in Camrose, Alberta, where she completed a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in Religious Studies. With a desire to experientially integrate the masculine and feminine expressions of Spirit, Jane traveled on spiritual pilgrimages to Crete, Portugal, Mexico and Belize exploring ancient traditions of worship. Influenced by Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell, Jane strives to explore eternal spiritual truths through the use of story and other creative expressions of spiritual axioms based on many of the world's spiritual traditions. Motivated to share her passion and to be of service to others, she worked for eight years counselling with street involved, and at-risk youth in Kamloops B.C. Inspired by the alignment of her personal journey and calling with the mission of A Home Away Retreat, she shifted her focus to serving as spiritual counsellor for the guests recovering at A Home Away Retreat. Jane also provides strong leadership for A Home Away in her role as General Manager.
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Sun Jan 02, 2011 11:38 am
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