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Vision and Mission statement


Big Furry Friends AAI- Therapy team


Big Furry Friends Animal-Assisted Intervention team is dedicated to focusing our visits on improving one's quality of life with individuals we may encounter.  To provide comfort and create a safe, encouraging environment, where the needs of the inner self are met, and the external world can change to improve the well-being of the individual.


Big Furry Friends Animal-Assisted Intervention team interacts with individuals by enriching the individual's quality of life through animal-assisted activities.  We dedicate our training to improving emotional well-being and self-esteem, providing comfort, and encouraging the improvement of social-behavior skills of the individuals we encounter.  (Fine, 2019)

 Therapy dogs, also known as Animal Assisted Dogs are trained and tested to perform tasks under the direction and control of a qualified handler in multiple settings.  The tasks the AA dog performs are to support individuals in these settings along with positively impacting the student's achievement within the public school system. 

There are many groups that work under the Animal-Assisted Intervention category. 

  • ​Animal Assisted Therapy- a professional therapist utilizes the therapy dog within their own clients to help aid the client in reaching specific goals. These interventions are goal-directed and are more structured. 

  • Animal-Assisted Education- A Educational professional utilizes the therapy dog within their classroom or classroom-like setting to help aid the students in reaching specific goals. 

  • Animal-Assisted Social work- A professional social worker utilizes the therapy dog within their session with an individual to help aid the emotional well-being of the individual

  • Animal-Assisted Activities- A non-certified professional utilizes the therapy dog in activities to help individuals with multiple needs. These needs may include motivational, educational, therapeutic, and recreational benefits to enhance the quality of the individual's life. These therapy dogs create a safe environment and make emotional connections.  They offer non-judgemental affection, reduce anxiety and stress, and build self-confidence. 

The Therapy Teams under the Big Furr Friends program, enter a large range of environments and settings to deliver emotional and motivational support to all individuals. These teams work formally and directly with the Animal Assisted Coach, Kim Marsh.  The teams under Big Furry Friends take special care of their Therapy dogs and their main focus during their visits is the welfare of their canines. The team's handlers have adequate training to become knowledgeable on dog body language, canine stress indicators, and environmental awareness. Our teams specialize in "meet-and-greet" programs, and motivational activities in nursing home settings, and independent living communities, with emotional support for all in the Hospital environment. 

Oh, the place we will go: 

  •  Ascension Borgess Hospital- Gull Road, Allegan

  •  The Fountains at Bronson Place, Kalamazoo   

  •  Public School Systems     



  • Public Libraries

    • Parchment Community Library​


















Want to learn more about how we can set up a meeting? 

Call us at 269-377-0817 

Do you have a Canine you feel could enjoy visiting others? 

Call us at 269-377-0817   

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