#034: Mental health professional Xochitl and her Labradoodle Lucy

by | May 23, 2022 | Therapy Dog Talk

Mental health professional Xochitl and her Labradoodle Lucy

Mental health professional Xochitl is making a positive impact with her Labradoodle Lucy, a certified Therapy Dog.

In this 34th episode of Therapy Dog Talk, I chat with Xochitl, a licensed mental health professional, and her pawsitive Labradoodle, Lucy. We talk about their journey into therapy dog work during the tough times of the COVID pandemic. Xochitl is a mental health helper in Southern California, and she tells us how therapy dogs made a big difference in her job. That’s why she decided Lucy was the perfect dog to join her family.

During the episode, we learn about their experiences training and helping others during the pandemic. We also talk about how important it is for Lucy to spend time with other people and animals. Xochitl shares her plans to include Animal Assisted Therapy when she starts her own private practice. She explains how dogs like Lucy can connect with people in a special way that talking alone might not do.

We also talk about the things you need to know when working with a therapy dog, like insurance, extra training, and finding places to volunteer, like hospitals. Xochitl even gives us a peek at their cool bandana shop called Pooch Positive.

By the end of this episode, you’ll learn about the hard work, never giving up, and love needed to work with a therapy dog. Plus, you’ll see how amazing these furry helpers can be for the people they work with.

In this episode, we discuss …

  • How Xochitl discovered Therapy Dogs in her work as a mental health professional.
  • What she does to continue Lucy’s socialization and skill development.
  • Things you may want to know when working with a dog in a professional setting.

Key moments you won’t want to miss:

  • [00:52] Learning how Therapy Dogs help people in mental health jobs.
  • [01:41] Picking a Labradoodle as the perfect Therapy Dog.
  • [03:19] Lucy’s natural talent for connecting with and helping people.
  • [05:21] The importance of spending time with others to make Xochitl and Lucy’s bond stronger.
  • [06:15] Planning a private practice, using Animal Assisted Therapy to help kids and adults.
  • [08:07] Extra training to make Lucy even better at helping people in a mental health job.
  • [09:34] The special connection dogs can make in therapy, compared to just talking.
  • [11:06] Meet Pooch Positive, Xochitl and Lucy’s bandana shop.
  • [12:21] Exploring the use of agility training in Animal Assisted Counseling.
  • [13:17] How Lucy can help kids who have been through tough times or don’t talk much, making therapy more effective.

I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I do. Give it a watch or a listen and then let me know in the community which part you found the most helpful!

Mentioned in this episode:

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Therapy Dog Talk is a podcast where I interview a different team each week via Instagram Live. If you enjoyed this episode please find us over at Apple, Google, or Spotify and give us a follow after you leave a review.

Do you know someone who would make a great guest? Be sure to reach out and let me know.

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