Mapa is a female Labrador retriever purchased in October 2013 from the Diana Campo breeder in Madrid. She is the second dog belonging to the Canis Majoris Foundation that has been carrying out therapies and relief work at different collaborative centers in the Community of Madrid. Mapa currently lives with Luis.

Her origins, lineage, selection of breeder and family were all carefully studied before being selected. Among the selection criteria applied, we observed that she was a docile and sociable animal with good clinical parameters and low propensity to illness.

As is the case with Mía, Mapa will be trained as a therapy dog all her life. From the early age of three months, she has been socialized and gradually trained with much patience as a therapy dog.

Through Mapa, we have commenced a new project that is characterized by the hopeful expectation and strong desire and all the values that the foundation wishes to convey through their work with dependent people.

The Labrador retriever

The Canis Majoris Foundation promotes various activities of Animal Assisted Therapy and therefore owns several therapy dogs. Despite this, in order to work with this type of animal it should not be forgotten that they are, above all pets which must be looked after and pampered. The dog is part of a therapy unit and as such, mustn’t be exploited or used. The true added value provided by the dogs to a project like this is that they  adopt an affective attitude and great bonding with the person and the extraordinary reactions that this produces for both, their owners as well as the people they live and work with on a daily basis.

However, the world of AAT is in constant evolution and the benefits for users has been demonstrated in therapies with dolphins, horses, donkeys and monkeys, however this is not apt for all pets. In the case of dogs, they must have a balanced character and be capable of learning complex tasks quickly and easily. These kinds of animals cannot be distracted in any situation and they must be capable of coping comfortably in any situation without showing any signs of aggression. Among the breeds which best respond to therapy work are the Labrador retriever, the Golden Retriever, the German shepherd along with other smaller breeds such as the Jack Russell.