09 Apr 2014
The Beeches care home in Leatherhead has introduced a successful way to bring a smile to the faces of older people and improve their well-being.
Staff and residents at Anchor’s The Beeches care home in Fortyfoot Road celebrated National Pets Month. Residents at the home called upon the services of Pat The Dog and their dog Gemma to mark Wet Nose Day on Tuesday 8 March.
Pat The Dog visited the residents on a fortnightly basis with Gemma who is a Labrador.
Staff also brought in their pet dogs, rabbits and tortoise for the occasion on Saturday 6 March.
The Beeches Activities Coordinator Lisa Harrell said: “The residents absolutely adored Gemma and gained so much enjoyment from patting her and talking to Gemma’s owner about what it’s like to look after her.
The residents had a great day on Saturday holding and stroking the rabbits, watching them run round and play
The Beeches, as with other Anchor care homes, has a pets policy which encourages older people to bring pets with them when they move in. Studies have shown that the health of residents improves when they interact with pets which they can stroke.
Customers with dementia are particularly responsive to Gemma.
“Some older people open up more when seeing a dog than they feel they can with people. And Gemma helps start conversations.
The Beeches is such a friendly home and the staff and residents are very caring so everyone has a lovely day, including Gemma.”