Outreach Therapy Pet Volunteer

Laura Fergusson Rehabilitation (LFR) specialises in the care and rehabilitation of clients who have experienced a neurological or physical injury or are experiencing the symptoms of a deteriorating neurological disease. Our aim is to promote as much function and independence as possible, while at the same time facilitating adjustment to disability, promoting self-determination and valuing quality of life.

One community initiative our clinical team utilises for rehabilitation is the Outreach Therapy Pet programme. Outreach Therapy Pets is an SPCA and St John initiative that incorporates cats and dogs into therapy programmes and residential living. Our clinical team use this programme to bring a different element to rehabilitation.

Outreach Therapy Pet Volunteers and their animals work alongside our Occupational Therapists (OT) to help our clients achieve their specific rehabilitation goals. This may include playing fetch, patting or brushing an animal to increase mobility in a client’s arm. Or if a client is recovering their ability to walk, they may incorporate walking with a dog into their treatment programmes. Under supervision of the OT, volunteers guide their animal through the therapy tasks and provide assistance where required.

Our clients range from 16 to 64 years old, with the majority being over 40.


Please see the SPCA website for requirements.

Current vacancy
  • 1 hour per week or fortnight (weekdays only)

NB: All initial interviews and animal assessments are done by SPCA. Please contact them directly at outreach@spca.org.nz for further information.


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