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Crystal Cabrera, OT/L, CSRS

Name: Crystal Cabrera, OT/L, CSRS

Location: Miami, FL

Practice Area: Neuro

Favorite Occupation: Therapy Dog Training

How often do you engage in your favorite occupation?

“Daily”

What do you get out of it?

“As I train my dog Koopa to become a therapy dog, I am strengthening our bond as well as giving him a greater purpose. He thrives off of interactions with all people. Clients I’ve encountered in the past have stated that having a therapy dog utilized in their sessions has made a positive impact in many ways. I personally get a sense of accomplishment with this occupation because each time we pass a test or learn a new trick I take pride in our mutual success with the training sessions. I also experience gratitude for myself, my dog, and others as our interactions bring smiles all around.”

What does it mean to your lyfe?

“I enjoy engaging in this occupation as I am able to apply the skills I’ve learned over the years as an occupational therapist. I shape my pup’s behaviors using principles of neuroplasticity, motor learning, behavior modification, and by grading tricks and skills into accomplishable goals. Once we become a certified therapy duo, this occupation will mean so much more as I tap into new potential treatment strategies and engagement with my clients.”

I can’t tell you how much I love this and have always respected the work that therapy dogs and their co-therapists do for our clients. Can’t wait for you and Koopa (best name ever BTW) to get certified. Who else incorporates dogs (or another animal) into therapy?

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