Chassman will present a free workshop on animal assisted therapy


dr. linda chassman

The Department of Counselor Education welcomes Dr. Linda Chassman PhD., LMFT, CAAP to Adams State University for a free, 6-hour workshop on Animal Assisted Therapy. Dr. Chassman is the co-founder and executive director of Animal Assisted Therapy Programs of Colorado, Animals Assisted Therapy.

Chassman, a licensed marriage and family therapist with over 25 years of counseling experience, has maintained a private practice for over 20 years as well as directing several agencies treating severe trauma and chemical addiction. She is also an educator, having taught at California State University at Fullerton and Colorado University Denver for 14 years. She and her first animal partner, Norman, provided Animal Assisted Therapy for more than 15 years with a variety of clients, including children, adolescents, adults and couples.

Chassman opened Animal Assisted Therapy Programs of Colorado with the inspiration and assistance of Mazey, her former feral kitten. She currently works with several therapy animals including Rupert, her adopted therapy dog; Clementine and Clyde, adopted cats; Duncan & Dahlia, pygmy goats; Stormy and Misty, two miniature horses; and Cody, a full-sized quarter horse.

Chassman also holds advanced certificates in: Animal Assisted Psychotherapy, Animals and Human Health: Animal Assisted Therapy Activities & Learning, Treatment of Child Abuse, & Treatment of Adult Children of Alcoholics. She and Rupert have received certification as a therapy team from Professional Therapy Dogs of Colorado in 2011.

Topics for the workshop include: (a) types of animal assisted activities; (b) choosing an animal for your setting/ population; (c) benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy; (d) Filial Pet Therapy; (e) education, training, and certification; (f) legal, ethical, and animal welfare issues; and (g) interventions/ live demonstration with dogs.

The event will be held from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Friday, May1, in the Student Union Building. Questions about the event and/or topic can also be addressed to Dr. Laura Bruneau, associate professor of counselor education, at