View Care Homes

01246 558 734

AAA Font Size

 Pet therapy invigorates Ripon care home’s elderly residents

Pet therapy invigorates Ripon care home’s elderly residents

By 14th December, 2023 Press Releases No Comments

A MENAGERIE of exotic animals flew, crawled, and slithered into a Ripon care home as part of a stimulating animal-assisted therapy (AAT) session for elderly residents.

Lizards, a snake, rat, owl, tortoise, guinea pig and hen were among the creatures to visit Sycamore Hall Care Home, on Kearsley Road.

The animals were brought in by Aquatic Finatic, a Northallerton pet shop that also offers AAT for care homes and rehabilitation centres in the region.

Residents had the chance to stroke and hold each of the creatures, which brought back happy memories of their own pets from their younger years.

Jim Smith, 94, recalled having chickens after seeing the hen from Aquatic Finatic. Sheila Walls, 101, wanted to take the animals to her room and keep them.

Celia Berry, 75, said: “My daughter would be amazed at me holding a snake.”

After meeting the bearded lizard, Fred Alderson, 91, said: “What a wonderful day. I love animals.”

Jill Scaife, activities coordinator at Sycamore Hall Care Home, said: “It was wonderful to see how much the residents and their families enjoyed their encounters with the animals. They haven’t stopped talking about the different creatures.”

AAT sessions have proven physical and mental health boosting benefits for elderly residents, according to home manager Ewelina Sosnowska.

She said: “We use AAT sessions to help tackle feelings of loneliness, stress, ease anxiety, and improve overall wellbeing. When residents are happy, they tend to be more energised, chatty, and outgoing.

“You only need to watch the residents interacting with the animals and hear them speaking about it afterwards, to their loved ones and the carers, to see what an impact these sessions have.

“We’d like to say a massive thank you to Aquatic Finatic for bringing the wonderful animals to the care home. I’m sure we’ll be running many more animal encounter sessions in future.”

Leave a Comment