Dolphin-Assisted Therapy (2011>)

Dolphin-Assisted Therapy (2011>)

Dolphin-assisted therapy is not my direct expertise. I don’t do the actual therapy, but I do help organizing and promoting it. My involvement in this field naturally grew from my extensive experience in developing methodology, training people and providing information services in the field of animal-assisted therapy as a whole.

Dolphin-Assisted Therapy for Czech and Slovak Clients

When I met the first Czech dolphin-assisted therapist Olda Bureš in 2011, I immediately realized that with my knowledge of animal-assisted therapies from previous projects and my web-design and PR skills, I’m ready to helping launch what seemed to be an unachievable projects – bring Czech clients to Turkey for dolphin-assisted therapy.

In the first years, Olda still had to rely on clientele from richer countries, such as Germany, but over time, word of mouth and our PR got out and brought a steady stream of Czech and Slovak clients, despite the high costs.

Cracking the Code

But there was something else at play. I realized that Olda and I shared similar views of how and why human-animal bonds work. Dolphins affect clients in similar ways as dogs or horses, only with seemingly tenfold intensity and much faster. He lived my theory in practice, the very things I had difficulty explaining to my “dog people” were commonsense to him.

In 2018, I finally went to see the dolphins myself and spent 10 days observing his work, followed by another trip in May 2019. I got a chance to speak to his colleagues, to observe the effects of the therapy on both Czech and international clients, speak to their families and, of course, swim with the dolphins myself. All this resulted in the inevitable – writing a book about dolphin-assisted therapy.