SEATTLE — Highly sought-after emotional support golden retriever Dr. Buttons Wigglesworth was reportedly not accepting new patients due to unusually high demand for her services, sources forced to look elsewhere for their four-legged support needs confirmed.
“All the hard work I kind of put in to exploit her healing properties for profit is finally paying off,” said Buttons’ trainer Carly Robbins while aggressively telling strangers not to touch her fur because she’s not the kind of pup you can just pet for free. “After Psychology Today named Buttons one of 2021’s ‘Therapy Animals to Watch,’ demand completely skyrocketed and we were overwhelmed with new patients. I’m currently considering adding a second or maybe even a third dog to the therapy roster and becoming my own for-profit emotional support animal clinic. Stay tuned.”
Those who needed immediate support were disappointed to be turned away.
“It’s incredibly difficult to find a therapeutic animal that’s covered by my insurance because evidently if it doesn’t directly benefit the pharmaceutical industry monetarily these companies won’t go near it,” said Shane Gramburg before reading reviews of available therapy animals in his area. “My last two emotional support animals didn’t quite work out. One was a cat who quite honestly seemed more depressed than me. The other was an emotional support peacock who apparently wasn’t allowed on domestic or international flights. Had to find that out the hard way. Do you have any idea what it’s like to abandon your therapy peacock at TSA? I just hope that little guy is doing well in his new forever home at Terminal B.”
Experts weighed in on the effectiveness and availability of animal-centered therapy options.
“Emotional support animals are a fantastic way to relieve anxiety because it’s nearly impossible to feel stressed while rubbing your hands on a dog’s face and saying, ‘Who’s a good boy?’ enthusiastically,” claimed psychologist Anne Bakersfield. “It’s just too bad that regular layman animals don’t provide the same level of support. In a perfect world, all species would naturally serve humans for every emotional need for free. It’s literally the least they can do for all the things we’ve done for the animal kingdom as a whole throughout history.”
At press time, Buttons’ trainer announced that they were creating a Headspace-like app where the dog would conduct guided meditations for as little as $9.99 per month.