Skip to main content

Pets in Retirement Community

In our independent living section of our continuing care community, we allow our residents to move in with their pet. The policy is that once the pet is gone, that they do not replace it. (We really do not enforce it though.) We all know the value of residents and pets!

This week I have been lucky enough to be able to take our newly found and adopted 5 week old kitten into work with me. The first day the staff met him and a few residents that I've shared my love of cats (and all animals) with. The next day, a few more residents met him.... and today, day three of keeping him under my desk in a box, a lot of residents met him! If you remember that commercial for the shampoo, that says, "and you tell two friends and they tell two friends, and they tell two friends," that is what happened. It was amazing to see the joy and surprise in their faces when they saw such a small living creature, I thought one lady was going to cry she was so moved.

The residents want me to have a contest to name my family's newest addition. Not sure if my boss will let that happen..... we will see.

Today, I really just wanted to share how grateful I am that I am allowed to bring him to work (I have to bottle feed him every few hours) and how much joy animals can bring to the community.

Do you have a pet therapy program in your independent living community? Check out this recent article called Alone time with pets helps seniors. This might be something to consider!

Popular posts from this blog

4 Pictures 1 Word Game for the Big Screen

Many of you who have played 4 Pictures 1 Word, know that this brain game is available as an app for your computer, tablet or phone for free. That is great, bu it does not allow a team to play and is not audience friendly if you wanted to present it at your retirement community (or other social gathering). 
After some time and effort, I made a 4 Pictures and 1 Word game  slide show that you can use in your community. I did use the app for suggestions and the Internet for the pictures. I am glad to share this with you so that you will not have to spend the hours that I did in creating this game. If you get the urge to make one also, please come back to this blog page and share it.  I played this last week with a group of about 25 independent living residents.We did not get through all of the slides due to time constraints..... but I was glad I did not run out of slides in my hour that I had their attention. I will be playing this with them again... and would love to have other slides t…

Play Music More Often

"Music is the soundtrack of your life," said Dick Clark. When you hear a song, if you are like me, it takes you back to that time in your life when you heard the song for the first time or to the occasion where you heard it. That is powerful. Can you imagine the music that our residents have heard in their lifetime? Just like the world in general, they have experienced so much and it is nice when we, as activities professionals, can take them back to the happier days, with the soundtracks from their lives.
So, the question I pose to you today is how do you find and present music to your residents? Of course, the first thing that comes to mind is by way of hired professional performers. That is a given in our jobs, so in this post, I'd like to focus on a few other ways that you can bring music to your residents that they will recognize and enjoy, along with theme music for your special events.

Pandora, Amazon, (search MP3 Download then search free songs) and YouTube are pla…

Brain Games

Recently we hosted our senior Olympics program. This year we added a new event called Brain Games. I found a really good link for brain games that you should look at to understand the definition.
After looking at that link and reading through some other online material, I realized that there is a difference between training your brain and brain games. Be mindful (pun intended) that you are not qualified to train resident's brains unless you have gone to training for it. We, as activities professionals however, are very capable of playing brain games with those who are interested in our communities.
Recently, I introduced Scattergories, Apples to Apples,Wii Jeopardy,Wii Wheel of Fortune and a Name that Tune type of game.  They are fun games that required your brain, so I thought that they were Brain Games. This last game, Name that Tune, I created on my own since I could not find anything that would have been appropriate for this generation to identify with. I downloaded music from t…