HEARTWARMING: Paw-fect companion brightens care
FOR WARWICK woman Kaye, moving into residential aged care would mean saying a heartbreaking goodbye to her best friend, dog Bindi.
Despite being a client of Churches of Christ in Queensland for a number of years, Kaye was “ready to race at the door” at any chance to return to her own home to her furry friend, according to service manager Bobbie-Jo Woods.
“It can be hard for many people to have to leave their home and move into aged care, but having to leave a pet behind can often be a deal breaker,” she said.
Unable to leave the terrier and unable to live independently, Kaye was torn.
That was until Churches of Christ developed a rare care plan, allowing Kaye and Bindi to stay together in residential care.
After assessing the dog’s health records, temperament and wellbeing, Bindi was able to join Kaye at the home.
The plan meant Bindi’s vaccinations are kept up-to-date, she is regularly groomed and exercised.
“Kaye and Bindi’s circumstance is not common. While we are blessed to have regular animal visitors, and we have chickens, many residents are unable to bring their pets when they move into the service. We worked closely with Kaye and her specific circumstance in allowing Bindi to join her,” Ms Woods said.
Now happily together, the pair can often be spotted walking around the Warwick campus and enjoying pats from residents and staff alike.
“A lot of the time, the residents will reminisce about dogs they had when they were younger,” Ms Woods said.
She said it spoke to the enormous benefits of pets on a person’s physical and psychological wellbeing.
“It’s such an adjustment moving into aged care and leaving your home, and Bindi has made that transition a little bit easier for Kaye. The health benefits speak for themselves,” Ms Woods said.
It comes as a recent Animal Welfare League Australia Pets in Aged Care Study revealed more than 4000 cats and dogs are surrendered to rehoming and impounding organisations every year due to “elderly-related reasons”.