This awareness month highlights the health benefits of living with and caring for pets, as well as promoting responsible pet ownership and encouraging members of the public to support animal welfare campaigns.
Great Oaks is committed to providing the highest standard of care and animal-assisted therapy is regularly encouraged at the home as it has been proven to positively promote wellbeing in elderly people and those with dementia. The home also has a pet budgie called Smuggler that residents enjoy singing and talking to regularly.
The alpacas proved such a draw that one resident, Catherine, who often stays in her room, requested to make a special effort to come into the living room for the morning to see the animals.
Michele Blake, wellbeing manager of Great Oaks, said: “Our new friends from Alpaca Adventure received a tour of the care home and were introduced to all of our residents, including those that were in their rooms. It was fantastic to see their faces light up when they saw the alpacas and gave them a cuddle. This is very beneficial for our residents as time spent with animals has been proven to boost mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.
“We are also visited by sibling Shih Tzus, Frankie and Harry, as well an array of animals brought in by The Creature Teachers who specialise in this special experience in care homes. It is really important that animals are regularly brought into the home as having a pet for company can trigger positive memories for our residents, as well as evoking a feeling of calm.”