Most people will agree when i say that pets, such as dogs or cats, help brighten your mood and help to reduce stress. Reptiles probably dont come to mind when talking about animals that bring a aura of peace or calmness however i have found that my reptiles carry a certain peacefulness with them.
I (Ellie) have suffered from anxiety and depression since i was 8 years old and i also have autism, animals have always provided more comfort to me then human touch however it was only in the last 3+ years, since i started keeping reptiles, that i found a constant form of comfort and safety.
Autism traits differ between person to person, their are common traits people have and common triggers that people have, however the way they feel and the things that help prevent or defuse them can differ from person to person so i can only speak from my personal experience. 'Stimming' is a very common thing with autism, it differs from person to person, with me i have a tendency to harm myself, whether that be by biting my nails/skin or scratching my arms until they bleed, either way it is not a healthy or conscious behaviour. Reptiles, i have found, are a amazing way to help with controlling or lessening these 'stimming' activities because not only do you have to pay attention to to the reptiles, you are interacting with these animals that you enjoy being around which is the best thing to do when you are in a foggy state of mind.
Therapy animals are a common practise with individual who have autism because they help with managing emotions, building social skills and engaging in play or average activities. And for me this is why reptiles have become my therapy animals, because of them i have been able to talk to a lot of other people, strangers, who either want to learn about reptiles or who are also passionate about them, not only that but they have given me something to dream about, they have given me the courage and focus needed to start this business and this is something i would never have been able to do without these amazing creatures.
Eli my ball python providing comfort during an episode.