Every week residents at the Pines get a special visit from some furry friends like animal-assisted therapy dog Foxy and they say having the pooch in their presence makes a difference at the George Town retirement home. Inside the Pines Retirement home, 82-year-old Carlene McTaggart gets a visit from a four-legged-friend that she looks forward to most. The pretty pooch is part of a Healing Paws initiative to give seniors like Ms. McTaggart the chance to interact with dogs like Foxy.
“We come here to the pines, we are the latest recruits for 2018. There are a few newbie dogs and newbie owners and my name is Alicia and this is Fox and we come to visit the people at the Retirement home just once a week to give them a little bit of relief, a little bit love, a little bit of happiness and just to enjoy our company,” said Alicia Proud-Rabess, Foxy’s owner.
She said she gets great satisfaction in seeing the comfort Foxy brings to the elderly.
“For me, we’re all very busy people in life and I get that but it’s so important to give back to our community. So a couple of hours a week I can sacrifice and the actual joy that you see coming out of these residents is kind of heartbreaking but its a beautiful moment. He’s just full of love, that’s why I chose him to be an animal-assisted therapy dog,” she said.
Mrs. Proud-Rabess said the aim of using therapy dogs is to give those at the retirement home a chance to feel loved.
“A lot of these ladies and gents live here full time, they don’t really have any visitors some of them have very few families left so this is their highlight of the week and a lot of them are suffering from various conditions,” she explained.
Mrs. Proud-Rabess adopted Foxy from the Humane Society in September 2017 and they visit the Pines once a week.