LEC notes that wandering and restlessness are reduced in residents who have cognitive impairment when they spend time with the cats
Thanks to a generous donation from two family members, Frost Manor residents are enjoying the company of some new furry friends.
In December, Pat Finney and Lisa Hughes dropped by Frost Manor to deliver two robotic therapy cats to the Lindsay long-term care home, and the felines have been having a positive impact on residents, says life enrichment co-ordinator (LEC) Lyndsay Burton.
One key benefit team members are seeing is a reduction in wandering and restless behaviours when residents who are affected by cognitive impairment spend time holding the cats, the LEC notes, adding the stuffed animals bring out residents’ “nurturing, caring nature.”
“The residents have really taken to the cats,” Lyndsay tells The OMNIway. “They see (the cats) and light right up reaching for them, wanting to hold the cats and pet them. Residents can be seen smiling and talking to the cats.”
Robotic cats and dogs have become fixtures in long-term care homes in recent years. The fur on the life-like animals feels realistic, they meow, have heartbeats, and they can move their ears and eyes. They also respond to being touched and petted.
There is one small matter up for debate about the robotic cats: what to name them.
“The residents have joked they want to name the cats, so we have been polling to see what the most popular names are,” Lyndsay says. “So far, Elvis and Dolly have topped the list along with Tigger and Frosty.”
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