Hello, my name is Allison White and I am a licensed clinical social worker and Veterinary Social Worker with over 27 years in the helping profession. My private therapy practice is Wellness Alley LLC. Part of my trauma therapy education included certification as a Compassion Fatigue facilitator. This training led me to educate hospital staff on the importance of making self-care a priority, using mindfulness skills to reduce stress and creating resilience during challenging situations. I also presented on this topic to animal shelters, rescue groups and veterinary hospitals, wrote pet-related articles for St. Louis Health & Wellness Magazine and Metro Pet. I was also a regular guest on the Health & Wellness Live radio show, where I spoke on caregiver stress-related issues, animal-assisted crisis response and the use of therapy dogs among other topics.
For years, I trained and competed with my dogs (agility, obedience, conformation competitions) and enjoyed our close bond. Two of my golden retrievers became certified pet-therapy dogs through Support Dogs, Inc, which is now known as Duo Dogs. One of my Golden Retrievers also became certified in animal-assisted crisis response, so she could be a second responder during crisis situations. As therapy dogs, they also visited a local children’s home, homeless women’s shelter and other facilities as part of the TOUCH therapy program.
I completed the Veterinary Social Work certificate program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and have worked with people who are suffering from pet loss and bereavement and compassion fatigue.
In January 2020, I started a podcast called Animal Academy Podcast, which focuses on the challenges people face as a result of their close relationship with animals. This includes anyone who works and cares for the well-being of animals; Veterinarians, Veterinary Nurses and Technicians, animal shelter and rescue workers, other animal caregivers and animal parents who have faced obstacles as a result of their great love for animals.
My deep love for animals and recognition of the importance of the human-animal connection has led me to create the Animal Academy to provide support to those who care for animals so they can continue their important work while managing life and work-related stressors.
Please join me on this journey to support each other and to help those who care for our animals. – Allison