bringing smiles, acceptance, laughter, love

Bringing Joy and Comfort Through Animal-Assisted Therapy
Loving Animals Providing Smiles

All Volunteer Organization

Loving Animals Providing Smiles (LAPS)

Loving Animals Providing Smiles (LAPS) is an all-volunteer organization of well-trained, certified therapy teams.  Each team is made up of one handler with one animal.  LAPS operates in Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties of Northern California.  Our goal is to enrich the lives of our clients and improve their overall well-being.

Summer 2023

Loving Animals Providing Smiles (LAPS) and Mini Hooves Providing Smiles (Mini Hooves / MHPS) have remained dedicated to building our organizations while responding and adapting to covid regulations.

LAPS has continued supporting current teams with hands-on training sessions and mentoring at visits.  The certified teams have been visiting a variety of locations including senior living, libraries and campuses.  During the summer you might see our teams at special events with the Solano County Libraries and out-n-about on field trips aimed at developing new skills and cooperation for our dedicated members.

The LAPS volunteer administration is reaching out to facilities requesting visits to see how our therapy teams might respond to the growing need.  They are also preparing the 6-week Fall Team Training Class planned for September 2023.  (Details on that class and application form can be found on the ‘downloads’ page.)

Mini Hooves has been visiting facilities in their area, keeping their certified teams current on skills and continuing to train their miniature donkeys. Their volunteer administration is also responding to requests, hoping to fill as many needs as possible.  The teams have been participating in fun events including the Western Gala and the annual July 4th parade. You might see MHPS handlers at the West Coast Equine Sports Therapy center and educational booths. This establishment provides much of the training and proofing activities for our therapy minis and their handlers.  We appreciate their many hours of guidance and professional expertise.

We understand how an animal, especially one that is trained to engage people politely, can bring happiness to others.  LAPS and Mini Hooves will continue to share our time with safety, kindness, joy and appreciation in our hearts and minds.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding,

Marilane Bergfelt

LAPS President and Co-Founder

Please keep up with our activities via Facebook. 

#LAPS_aat #therapypets #animalassistedinteractions  #animalassistedtherapy

#therapydog #therapycat  #therapyhorse #therapydonkey #napavolunteer

#solanovolunteer  #sonomavolunteer

Caring Canines Screening

Saturday, July 20th from 11:00am – 3:00pm at 68 Coombs St, Bldg N, Napa.

Volunteering as a certified Animal-Assisted Therapy Team might be your next step if you have done some training with your dog! This free review is not a qualification but a preliminary screening for the owner and dog to identify their potential.

Click here to Signup (link opens in a new tab)

Downloads for Canine and Non-Canine Teams
A large black Labrador and his handler help an elementary school girl learn how to safely greet a strange dog.
Canine Team Application
(link opens in a new tab)
Two LAPS volunteers stand in front of our booth at an outdoor event.
Associate Member Application
(link opens in new tab)
A large white cat lays on a chair in the sunshine. The cat is wearing a purple LAPS scarf around his neck.
Non-Canine Team Application
(link opens in a new tab)
Downloads for Mini Hooves Teams
Two mini hooves teams and a cat team pose outside a facility.
Check back for Mini Hooves class information.
An elderly woman pets the muzzle of a brown miniature horse. The horsse is wearing a purple harness and tennis shoes.
Mini Hooves Team Application (link opens in new tab)
A brown miniature horse visits with clients at a senior facility. His handler stands beside him.
Mini Hooves Associate Application (link opens in new tab)
A palomino mini horse poses for the camera with his two LAPS handlers. The handlers kneel beside him.
Mini Hooves website coming soon!