When it comes to visitors, nobody is greeted with bigger smiles at Sanctuary Care’s home in Chester than Australian labradoodle, therapy dog Ned.
Ned has been visiting residents at Upton Dene Residential and Nursing Home for several months – bringing joy to everyone he meets.
The home’s activities co-ordinator Bernie Harding says: “We are always looking for ways to enrich the lives of our residents and spending time with animals brings such joy.
“Many of our residents love animals and they absolutely adore Ned and really look forward to his visits every week.”
Ned and his owner Brenda Maddocks are volunteers with Therapy Dogs Nationwide, a national charity where volunteers take their temperament tested dogs to places like schools, care homes and hospices for animal assisted therapy.
Brenda, who has also taken Ned to visit students at their university accommodation, as well as making regular visits to a local hospice and another local care home too, says volunteering gives her so much too.
“It’s a lovely experience going to Upton Dene, the staff are just fantastic and it’s a joy to visit,” she says. “The residents just love him.
“Ned is such a gentle soul and I wanted to share what we’ve got with him and give a little back – we love it and Ned loves it too – he gets a lot of fuss.”
The benefits animal assisted therapy gives to older people is widely known. As well as the obvious social benefits, studies show that spending time with dogs can have significant health benefits too.
Therapy Dogs Nationwide is a registered charity that arranges for registered and assessed dogs to carry out therapeutic visits to hospices, nursing homes, care homes, schools and many other similar places. People of all ages benefit from this invaluable work which is carried out by volunteers and their temperament tested, friendly dogs in their local community.
For more about Sanctuary Care visit https://www.sanctuary-care.co.uk/news