Dr. Lisa Lunghofer, ASI’s Director of Human-Animal Programs, presented a series of three webinars on animal abuse and children in collaboration with the Humane Society Academy. The webinars were sponsored by the InMaat Foundation and each was pre-approved for 1 CE point of continuing education credit toward the Certified Animal Welfare Administrator credential. The webinars were recorded and can be accessed free of charge.
In the first webinar of the series, “Animal Abuse and Children: An Important Risk Factor,” Dr. Lunghofer discussed the role companion animals play in children’s lives and the growing body of research on the relationship between animal abuse and other types of antisocial behavior. Using case studies, she explained why all professionals dealing with children should be aware of animal abuse as a risk factor for children.
In the second webinar, “Assessing Children’s Relationships with Animals,” Dr. Lunghofer focused on assessing children’s relationships (both positive and negative) with animals. She discussed what professionals should look for and the types of questions that might be asked about animal-related experiences. Using case examples, she discussed the importance of individualized assessment and reviewed factors to consider in assessment.
In the final webinar, “Intervening with Children who Witnessed or Engaged in Animal Abuse,” Dr. Lunghofer described and discussed the range of intervention resources available for children who have witnessed, engaged in, or are at risk of engaging in animal abuse. These include psychological intervention using the AniCare Child approach and psycho-education programs such as the Children and Animals Together (CAT) Assessment and Treatment Program. She also discussed prevention programs for children who are at risk of engaging in animal abuse.