Tag Archives: pets

Autism & Animals Meltdowns, Dogs and Me!

Like a lot of autistic people I have always struggled with meltdowns.  Ever since I was a very young child if I grow overloaded, or become too stressed, I can have a meltdown and shout, lash out, or break things.  Even though some aspects of these are less severe now than when I was younger, meltdowns are something I have struggled with my entire life.  There is very little that can help me to calm down, or relax when I am in the middle of such an outburst.  Or even make me feel better immediately after having one.  Possibly the only thing that can is having contact with my dogs.  My oldest dog Fred is nearly sixteen, and I am twenty-one, so for the majority of the time I have been having outbursts Fred has been there.

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I can`t remember how I first found out that Fred helped to calm me down.  But I know that after a while I started going to him after I had a meltdown, just to lie down with him, or stroke him, and that this would bring me a sense of comfort.  Even though Fred doesn’t always like being picked up, or stroked he always seems happy to spend time with me after I have had a meltdown.  And when I was younger just being able to spend that time with him would help me to relax, and calm me down.  I would walk round holding him and gradually become less and less stressed as I did so.  Even now as an adult the same is true.  Nothing calms me down quicker than being able to spend some time with the dogs.  I know this is something that is true for a lot of other autistic people, and even some people without autism.  Animals can just be a calming influence overall.  And if you are somebody like me who feels stressed and anxious every single day, and always has done, then having such a calming influence, that is also part of the family, is a huge help.

My dogs Fred and Poppy are the inspiration behind ASK-PERGERS?  new book Autism & Animals – the benefits of animals for autistic people, available for pre-order now J

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01GO1N1X6

If you need any more help or advice about Asperger`s/Autism or simply want to talk about it check out our free help and advice service ASK-PERGERS?

Twitter https://twitter.com/ASKPERGERS

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ASKPERGERS?ref=hl

And have a look at our books (at the time published under pseudonyms, but we did write them trust us on that!)  http://www.jkp.com/catalogue/author/1762

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Autism & Animals – the benefits of animals for autistic people.

After about two years work we are getting close to publishing our book, Autism & Animals – the benefits of animals for autistic people.  The book looks at a variety of animals, and how they might be helpful to autistic people.  But why did we want to write about this subject?  And what’s the point of the book?

For as long as I have owned dogs they have helped me with my autism: making me feel more confident, more relaxed, helping me to understand my emotions, and also helping me to calm down after outbursts.  But it was not until we set up ASK-PERGERS? and got more in touch with other autistic people, and their families that we were able to see that this was far from uncommon. In fact it was getting to a point where hardly a day went by without us seeing a story about how an animal of some kind was helping an individual with autism.  We love animals, and both know first-hand just how beneficial they can be to autistic people, so it just seemed like the most obvious thing to do was to write a book on the subject of animals and people with autism.

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Over the last few years the book has gone through a few incarnations.  At one point I was more involved in the writing than I have been in the final draft, at others the plan was to send it off to a professional publisher.  But in the end we got to where we are now – a self-published book compiled of real-life stories contributed by autistic people, their families, and charities that work with therapy animals.  Intermixed with these stories are some ideas on why animals might be of benefit to people with autism, some research studies on animals and autism, and some accounts from our own lives.

What’s the point of the book?  As corny as it might sound the point of the book is to both entertain, and educate.  As I say we take a look at some of the research and theories as to why animals might be beneficial to autistic people, but the book is also full to the brim with images of all kinds of animals.  Even though my Mum did most of the writing I was heavily involved in the making of the book, and for me one of the most interesting parts was reading all the stories that were sent in to us: horses, frogs, dogs, and all kinds of other animals that have impacted on the lives of autistic people, of all ages, are featured.  As an autistic person it was great to be able to read them, and to hear people talking about something I could relate to.  I hope that if you read the book you find the stories of us autistic people, and our animals, just as interesting as I do! IMG_7526 (2).JPG

If you need any more help or advice about Asperger`s/Autism or simply want to talk about it check out our free help and advice service ASK-PERGERS?

Twitter https://twitter.com/ASKPERGERS

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ASKPERGERS?ref=hl

And have a look at our books (at the time published under pseudonyms, but we did write them trust us on that!)  http://www.jkp.com/catalogue/author/1762