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Zoo therapy for aged care residents

Residents at MercyCare’s Residential Aged Care facility in Wembley had the chance to interact with several cuddly animals when a mobile petting zoo paid a visit.

The residents got to pat rabbits, lambs, goats, chickens and even piglets last week.

The visit was facilitated by 14 volunteers from BankWest, who brought the animals around to be patted, cuddled and fed by the residents.

Aged Care Services Executive Director Carlo Calogero said the residents got a real buzz out of interacting with the animals.

“There is evidence to suggest that interacting with animals is very therapeutic for elderly people,” he said.

“It was so lovely to watch the residents’ excitement as they got to hold and pat the animals.

“They were genuinely thrilled and there were big smiles all round.”

MercyCare Chief Executive Officer Chris Hall said it was fantastic that the event could be facilitated by volunteers.

“We are really grateful to the volunteers from BankWest, who took time out of their day to spend with the residents,” he said.

“We really appreciate that they helped to make this a positive and fun experience for everyone involved.”