Pets not only offer companionship and unconditional love, but they may have the ability to boost health and general well-being, especially in the elderly.
Pet therapy can help improve the social, emotional, or cognitive functioning of aged care residents. Other benefits may include:
- Decreased blood pressure and stress
- Improved communication and reminiscence
- Many people who are normally unresponsive to other therapies may ‘brighten up’ and ‘chat’ with a pet.
- Pets motivate and encourage the elderly to stay healthy and exercise, giving them a feeling of being ‘needed’.
- Motor skills may improve.
Tatura's Parkvilla Aged Care has a resident cat, Lucky, who is a much-loved part of the family. Lucky can usually be found taking a nap and being stroked on the lap or bed of one of the residents. He brings great joy to all he visits.
Rex, the dog, visits Parkvilla regularly also…and has been known to coax the residents into throwing a ball for him to play fetch and joyfully returns the ball to the resident to continue the game.