174: Animal-Assisted Therapy with Laura Kruger

Animal-Assisted Therapy with Laura Kruger


Are you curious about animal-assisted therapy? 

In this episode of SLP Coffee Talk, I sat down with Laura Kruger to talk about how she incorporates her adorable dog, Blaze, into her speech therapy sessions. Laura’s students love working with Blaze while in speech therapy and she’s sharing all of the details of how it works with us today. 

Laura Kruger has been practicing as an SLP for 9 years. She has worked in a variety of settings but currently works in an elementary school servicing children ages 3-12 with varying exceptionalities. 

Blaze is an 8-year-old golden doodle and went through a variety of trainings to become a registered therapy dog. He has been working with Laura daily for the last 4 years at her current school and 5 years total. 

She not only incorporates Blaze into her speech and language sessions, but he also helps other students who are on behavior plans or in a moment of crisis. The impact of having Blaze on Laura’s campus has been amazing! 


In This Episode You’ll Discover:

  • How Laura got started with animal-assisted therapy 
  • How Blaze helps students at Laura’s school
  • How she incorporates Blaze into her therapy sessions
  • The challenges she faces during animal-assisted therapy
  • Where to get started if you want to bring animals into your therapy sessions
  • The breeds of dogs that are good for this type of therapy
  • What training for therapy dogs looks like


I hope you enjoyed this episode with Laura! It is so inspiring how she took action on something that she knew would be great for her students, even though it hadn’t been done at her work before. If you’re considering offering animal-assisted therapy, I hope this gives you the inspiration you need! 

If you want to learn more from Laura, follow her and Blaze on Instagram and check out her Facebook page. You can also read the article she wrote for ASHA here

If you haven’t already, make sure to sign up for our upcoming virtual conference! Join us for 10 hours of professional development that is relevant and practical! Reserve your spot at speechretreat.com


Animal-Assisted Therapy with Laura Kruger


Joke of the Week:

Q: What do you do if your dog chews a dictionary? 

A: Take the words out of his mouth.


Resources Mentioned: 

Follow Laura and Blaze on Instagram

Check out Laura’s Facebook page

Read Laura’s article for ASHA 

Reserve your seat at The Speech Retreat


Where We Can Connect: 

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