In The News

Rotary Hears from Dr. David Hansen, Director of Patchogue Rotary Animal Assisted Therapy

 Thursday, November 17th, Rotarian David Roy Hensen of the Rotary Club of Patchogue, and Director of the Patchogue Rotary Animal Assisted Therapy (PRAAT) addressed the Smithtown-Sunrise Rotary Club. His presentation was very enlighting as he discussed programs that provide joy and companionship of pets and animals to children in libraries, to those who are ill, mentally or physically handicapped or otherwise disadvantaged. Often these people have had pets in their past but do to changes in circumstances, no longer have them. PRAAT brings people back into contact with the therapeutic world of animals.
Dave mentioned a list of facilities that PRAAT visits that include: Nursing Homes, Adult Homes, Hospitals, Handicapped Facilities, Pediatric Wards, Rehabilation Centers, Schools and Libraries, and Camp PaQuatuck (Rotary Summer Camp For Handicapped Children). Animal Assisted Therapy lowers blood pressure, reduces anxiety and stress, improves motor skills, communication, reading, and makes people feel important and worthy.
David Roy Hensen, DVM, DABVP has been a Veterinarian since 1983. He opened Paumanok Veterinary Hospital in 1992 and is  board certified in the American Board of Veterinary Specialists, canine and feline. Dave started Patchogue Rotary Animal Assisted Therapy program as a community service project in 1993. David has won numerous awards most recently the Long Island Veterinary Medical Association Meritorious service award. He was finalist in American Veterinary Medical Association Bustad companion animal award.
Dr. David graduated from veterinary school in the Dominican Republic in 1982, where he learned to speak Spanish fluently. He has a keen interest in diagnostic ultrasound. In 1988, he became a Diplomat of the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners, a prestigious honor that recognizes him as a specialist in the practice of companion animal veterinary medicine. He is a member of the Long Island Veterinary Medical Association, New York State Veterinary Medical Society, American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Veterinary Ultrasound Society, and many community and conservation organizations.
Smithtown-Sunrise Rotary meets Thursday 7:45 AM at the Smithtown Millennium Diner located on the corner of Main Street and Route 111. Meetings are open to the public with the exception of the last Thursday of each month. Rotarians practice "Service Above Self".

By Judy Marlow-Ratway
November 24, 2011 Neighborhood Now