Therapy alpacas cheer up senior citizens

Posted by Leila Stein on 5 May 2020

Those living in old age homes and elderly care facilities are having a particularly hard time during the coronavirus pandemic. Being in lockdown away from family and at greater risk can cause severe distress and anxiety. In California, two alpacas were brought in to help.

Residents of the Boulder Creek Post Acute assisted living center in Poway, California were visited by Kronk and Kuzco, two alpacas from the Helen Woodward Animal Center’s Pet Encounter Therapy program.

Although the residents could only view the fluffy creatures from a safe distance, their presence brought a smile to their faces.

‘In the many years I have worked with this program, I have seen the unique gifts each animal can bring to this type of therapy,’ said program manager Robin Cohen in a statement. ‘These alpacas are some of our funniest characters. They make us laugh every day and we knew they’d be the perfect key to inspiring smiles right now.’

Usually, the animals part of these therapy visits are ones you can hold and cuddle like cats, dogs and bunnies but since no touching could be allowed it was thought bigger animals would provide more enjoyment through a window.

Watch the adorable visit here:

Image: Helen Woodward Animal Center’s Pet Encounter Therapy program

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