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ERIC Number: ED545854
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 236
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2675-0982-6
The Role of Relationships between Adults and Their Canine Companions: The Impact on Personal Growth and Well-Being
Kramer, Lorie Renee
ProQuest LLC, D.Ed. Dissertation, The Pennsylvania State University
This qualitative study used narrative analysis to explore the role of relationships between adults and their canine companions and the role of this relationship in personal growth and well-being. The theoretical frameworks to inform the study consisted of attachment theory and a blend of relational theory and connected knowing. The study focused on understanding adults' relationships with their canine companions and, specifically, how this particular relationship contributes to personal growth and well-being in adulthood. Data consisted of participant narratives shared during interviews. In addition, participants showed a favorite photograph of their canine companion(s) and shared the story behind the photograph. Through their own stories, ten participants descriptively shared how the relationships with their canine companions have fostered their personal growth and promoted their well-being. The narratives were individually and collectively analyzed. The findings revealed commonalities across the narratives. First, participants considered their canine companions to be family members and for some participants the canine companions filled a void in their lives. Several participants shared how personally rewarding it was to rescue a canine in need of a home. Second, the canine companions taught the participants about unconditional love, patience, and responsibility/accountability. Third, spending time with the canine companions, the intuitiveness within the relationship, and the differences in canines' personalities contributed to the promotion of well-being. The study concludes with implications for theory and practice. The findings have implications for the adult education field as growth and learning is not limited to connections and relationships with other humans, but also occurs through relationships with canine companions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A