Dog, through use of his paws, as energised by mind and will, can influence the state of many people’s health (adapted from Mary Reilly)
A PAT dog’s perspective on their link to meaningful occupation.
So last week I fell upon an opportunity I could not miss: to be involved in a photo shoot! Since my recent appearance in the OT magazine these sorts of opportunities seem to be falling at my paws.
One person I’ve been working with regularly really struggles to regulate their emotions and conversation between them and my housemate led to discussion around occupations that reduce stress and help them feel more relaxed. The person mentioned how they used to love photography and how they like it because it doesn’t involve having to speak – something they find a bit difficult right now.
So then somehow I got roped into this. Admitted, I am a fairly handsome chap but this is the first time my good looks have seemed so appreciated. I didn’t get a lot of say in the agreement but it was an excuse to lounge around the lovely garden of the centre for people who are homeless that I’m working at, so I happily trotted along.
So there we were: me, the lovely person who seems to have taken a shine to me, and a camera. I really played up to it. I had a lie by the lovely flower beds which are tended to by a person in recovery at one of the centres hostels, then I strutted my stuff on the steps.
It was so peaceful and a really sunny day which made my lovely coat look even more shiny. It was a real dog walk as I modeled my red collar on the paths. We were both very mindful during the shoot, nothing else seemed to matter.
The photographer seemed so calm throughout and spoke really calmly to my housemate and me. I think it helped when my housemate mentioned to them I don’t like loud voices as this can put my fur on edge. They mentioned how much they’d enjoyed the shoot and how they’d found it a good way to chill out during what sounds like a challenging time for them. They seemed really proud of their work and when we came back into the centre they were showing staff here pictures of me they’d taken – we got many compliments; the photographer on their skills, and me on my modelling.
It seems the next plan is for my gorgeous snout to be plastered all over a scrap book the photographer is making – a book full of things they can look at that makes them feel calm at times when things aren’t so good. They’re wanting to personalise their house a little bit too as apparently it’s a difficult place to settle. It’s been agreed they can have a framed photograph of me posing with them to take home.
I’m so vogue.
Jed (with help from Rebecca Wint).