Philip Tedeschi

Philip Tedeschi

Clinical Professor

What I do

"Animals provide some of our most reliable, uncomplicated and valued relationships. Understanding the contributions animals make to our health and well-being is a vital part of educating tomorrows social workers" My primary activities include coordination of the AASW academic certificate and The IHAC - PRO professional development programs with in the Institute for Human- Animal Connection.


Anti-Cruelty and Violence, human-animal connection, Bio- Affiliation and Nature Connection, Trauma Informed Care, Youth and Children, clinical social work, poverty, Social & Interspecies Justice

Professional Biography

Some of Philip Tedeschi's best friends are animals. He studies and teaches on the intricate relationship between people, domestic and wild animals, and the natural world. Tedeschi is the executive director of the Institute for Human-Animal Connection and a clinical professor at the Graduate School of Social Work. He is globally recognized for expertise in the clinical methods of animal-assisted Interventions, human- animal interaction and conflict and coordinates the school's animal-assisted social work certificate program for master of social work (MSW) students, as well as the IHAC- Pro professional development programs. He received his MSSW degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where his specialization was the bio-affiliative connection between people and animals.

Tedeschi's research, scholarship, presentations, training and community practice work have focused on human-animal interactions, conservation, human ecology, causes of violence toward people and animals, environmental social work, experiential therapy and forensic social work practice. Tedeschi is a certified Master Therapeutic Riding Instructor, former course director and instructor with Outward Bound, wilderness medical technician, forensic evaluator for interpersonal violence and animal abuse and has many years of experience in non-traditional therapeutic approaches with children, adults and families. He specializes in the therapeutic potential of human-animal interaction, trauma informed methods and intervention in interpersonal violence, including assessment and intervention with animal abuse.


  • Other, Northeastern University, Boston, School of Criminal Justice, 1986
  • BS, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1985
  • Other, University of Chicago Laboratory School, 1979

Licensure / Accreditations

  • Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (WEMT-B)
  • Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (WEMT-B)
  • Other
  • Anicare Child and Adult Evaluator and Treatment Provider
  • Certified Equine Facilitated Mental Health Practitioner
  • Certified Animal Cruelty Evaluator/Treatment Provider- Anicare Adult and Anicare Child
  • Colorado Sexual Offender Management Board – Listed Treatment Provider/Forensic Evaluator- Youth
  • Certified Sexual Offense Evaluator
  • Certified Animal Cruelty Evaluator
  • Colorado Sex Offender Management Board-Listed Treatment Provider/Forensic Evaluator – Adult
  • Master Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor
  • Certified Master Therapeutic Riding Instructor
  • Cheff Center for the Handicapped – Professional Equine Therapeutic riding Instructor
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)

Professional Affiliations

  • Other
  • Other
  • Other
  • National Association of Social Workers (NASW)
  • Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)


Education is the core part of our mission. In fact, it’s why the Institute for Human-Animal Connection (IHAC) was created. Through our continuing education certificates and our master of social work (MSW) animal-assisted social work certificate, we work to elevate the value of the living world and the interrelationship and health of people, other animals and the environment with ethics and welfare at the forefront.

My expertise expertise and innovation in evidence-based clinical applications of animal-assisted interventions (AAIs) allow effective leadership of the Institute for Human-Animal Connection. My research and scholarship interests in the bio-affiliative connection between people and animals began more than 28 years ago with my graduate training in social work and a specialized course of study on human-animal interactions (HAI) at the University of Wisconsin. At the University of Denver, I am the founder and coordinator of the Animal-Assisted Social Work Program for Master of Social Work (MSW) students, as well as the IHAC - Pro series of professional development offerings that include Animals and Human Health Professional Development Certificate Program, The Canine Assisted Intervention Specialist Program, The Equine Assisted Mental Health Practitioners Program and The Raising Compassionate Kids - Humane Education Certificate Program. These programs are now nationally and internationally regarded as leading academic curricula of study for Human- Animal Interaction (HAI), Animal Assisted Social Work (AASW) and Animal Assisted Intervention (AAIs). In my capacity as Clinical Professor at the Graduate School of Social Work and as the Executive Director of the Institute for Human-Animal Connection at the University of Denver, I am professionally recognized nationally and internationally for program development, establishing new AAI methodologies and implementing and adapting these methods for a variety of clinical settings. My work in this area includes the development of AAIs for trauma recovery, including treatment pf PTSD, Child Development trauma, crisis response, military trauma, children in child welfare with attachment deficits and at-risk populations. I am also interested in the protection of animals and the environment, the intersectional consideration of human-animal and nature resilience (One- Health). I disseminate my findings to diverse audiences through publications, presentations, trainings, community practice, professional development distance learning programs and academic programs and consultation.

Areas of Research

Anti-Cruelty and Intervention with Interpersonal Violence
Human-Animal Interaction
Bio- Affiliation and Nature Connection
Trauma Informed Care
Youth and Children
Clinical Social Work
Social & Interspecies Justice

Key Projects

  • AAI with Denver Community Programs Serving People Experiencing Homelessness
  • IHAC and Denver Homelessness and Pets
  • Menmon Dog Training Program Consultation Agreement

Featured Publications

Sparks, J., Camacho, B., Tedeschi, P., & Morris, K. N. (2017). Ethnicity is not a primary determinant of willingness to spay or neuter pets dogs and cats. Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science.
Fine, A., Tedeschi, P., Mackintosh, T., & Boone, J. (2018). Fostering a More Humane University Environment Through Course Work, Service-Learning, and Animal-Assisted Interventions and Activities. American Psychological Association Division 17, Human-Animal Interaction Bulletin/special-edition-human-animal-interaction-interdisciplinary-centers-and-institutes. .


Flynn, E., Mueller, M. K., Senecal, J., Klee, S., Tedeschi, P., & Morris, K. N. (2019). Understanding human-animal-environment interventions within a complex environment: The Green Chimneys research project. International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations Conference. Brewster, New York: International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations .
Tedeschi, P. (2018). The Intimate Bond: Scientific Models and Practice Methods for Animal Assisted Interventions in Correctional Settings, . Israeli Prison Service-Hermon. Hermon Prison- Northern Israel: IPS and Menmon LTD.
Tedeschi, P. (2018). 2017 In Consideration for Legal and Ethical Standing for other Animals. Tel Aviv University Law School, Tel Aviv, Israel: Tel Aviv Law School Environmental Clinic.
Tedeschi, P. (2018). Animals on the Mind 3.0- Extraordinary Connections: Illuminating neurodiversity in human-animal relationships. Animals on The Mind. University of Denver: IHAC.
Tedeschi, P. (2018). Best practices for Pet Prescriptions of Emotional Support Animals: Clinical Benefits of Human-Animal Connection. Interconnected Webinar Series. Denver: Colorado Link Project.


  • Prof. Grant Award, Univeristy of Denver
  • Faculty Career Champions Nominee, GSSW students
  • Excellence in Teaching for an Appointed Faculty, Graduate School of Social Work
  • Selected for PAW Commission, Governors Office- Colorado