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Information about Coronavirus and Kites Children’s Therapy services

Dog-Assisted Therapy

Main Content

Our Dog Assisted Therapy program is one of very few offered in Western Australia. It has been designed to help children achieve their therapy goals across a number of areas including social participation, emotional regulation, gross and fine motor skills development, communications skills, pretend play, turn taking and self-care.  Therapy sessions are led by occupational therapists and use trained therapy dogs like Bazza.

Who can benefit?

Children of all ages with a range of therapy needs can benefit from Dog-Assisted Therapy. During the intake process and the initial session, our team will determine if the service is suitable for your child.

What is Dog Assisted Therapy?

A Dog-Assisted Therapy session usually lasts one hour and involves the child, therapist, therapy dog and parents or caregivers.

The service is based around specific goals with children attending a block of weekly therapy sessions. Our accredited dog trainer will also attend some sessions to assist our therapists as required.

In the initial session, you and your child will be orientated to the service. Our therapists will work with you to set suitable goals, and your child will be introduced to our trained therapy dog for the first time.

At the end of the program, goals are reviewed and you are provided with a summary report that can be shared with your child’s therapy team

Goals and activities of Dog-Assisted Therapy

  • Motivation for children to engage in practice of skills. Our dogs are used as a tool for engagement during sessions and incorporated into functional activities
  • Gross and fine motor tasks including motor planning and sequencing, obstacle courses, writing
  • Emotional regulation through providing a calming effect during sessions, supporting emotional regulation strategies
  • Social skills development by understanding body language and social cues, turn-taking, listening, waiting
  • Self-care and care of others in particular learning skills including dressing and feeding
  • Play and communication skills by encouraging children to communicate wants and needs through words or other means
  • Pretend play namely through engaging the dog in imaginative play and role play.

Our trained Therapy Dogs

Kites therapy dogs are trained in partnership with Guide Dogs WA (opens in a new window). Our highly accredited trainers ensure every therapy dog meets strict training standards, including the right temperament and working style, in order to become a Kites therapy dog.



Therapy Dog

Hi, my name’s Bazza. I’ve trained hard to become a therapy dog, and had lots of fun along the way. The best thing about my job is spending time with children. I love to see them smiling and having fun during their therapy sessions.

I enjoy playing games and especially like it when children give me cuddles or groom me - I’ve even fallen asleep a few times during a grooming session, but don’t tell anyone!

When I’m not hard at work I love to spend time playing with my toys and snoozing. On a hot summer day, you’ll find me relaxing in my paddling pool



Therapy Dog

Hi, my name is Ernie, and I’ve just finished my important training to be a therapy dog.

I love playing with kids and showing off all my tricks, like doing obstacle courses and playing games. After I help kids with their activities, I love getting lots of cuddles. And once we get to know each other you’ll also see how cheeky I can be!

When I am not at work I love walks in the bush, playing with my squeaky toys and sleeping on the couch.


To find out more about Dog-Assisted Therapy, get in touch with us today. If you’re ready to get started, make a referral today by completing the form below.

Make a referral

Therapy for Children & Youth Referral Form

Details of child

Australian Residency Status*

Details of parents(s) / guardian(s)

Is this person the child's legal guardian?
Parent/guardian 1 address*
Is this person the child's legal guardian?
Parent/guardian 2 address

Details of referral

Please attach copies of diagnostic reports (if available)
Maximum upload size: 10MB
Attach up to three PDF or Word documents. Maximum upload size is 10 Mb.
Does your child engage in any behaviours that may compromise the safety of our therapy dog?

Contact details for referee

Complete this section only if the referee is not the parent
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