Animal Assisted Crisis Response

Helping people recover from crisis, disaster and trauma through the integration of trained and certified thearpy animals

AACR is an adjunct modality closely realted to AAT that gives "crisis intervention teams, counselors, clergy and other trained professionals an additional means" to help people impacted by crisis or trauma.*  AACR may be delivered as an animal assisted activity (AAA) or as an animal assisted therapy (AAT).  When delivered as AAA the animal/handler team works with clients.  When delivered as AAT, the animal/handler team works with a health care professional.  

*Greenbaum, S.D. (2006).  Introduction to working with animal assisted crisis response animal handelr teams.  The International Journal of Emergency Mental Health.  8(!), 49-61.   

AACR was used extensively in the New York metropolitian area in the days following 9/11.   The modality is based on work originally done by Cindy Ehlers, Sandy Arrington, and their canine companions (Bear & Garth) at Thurston High School (1998) in Oregon.  Diane & Kay have been involved with AACR since 9/11.  We have concentrated our involvement on training of teams in techniques associated with AACR and training of handlers relating to prevention of secondary trauma. 

(Left to Right) Diane & Torrie, Cindy Ehlers & Tikva, and Kay & Spirit at their poster presentation at the ICISF 9th World Congress in Baltimore, MD.  

 On February 18, 2007 we presented at the International Criticial Incident Stress Foundation's 9th World Congress on Stress, Trauma & Coping in Baltimore, MD. 

The summary of the poster presentation and the handout for our afternoon session are below.  In any use of this information, please give proper credit to the authors. 

Afternoon Presentation at ICIFS


 The five therapy dog teams who presented at ICIFS.  Left to right, Diane & Torrie, Gayle Kohr & Comanche (PACKS), Donna Reinert & SunD (PACKS), Kay & Spirit, and Cindy Ehlers & Tikva (AACR).