Pets As Therapy is a charity that provides therapeutic visits by friendly dogs and cats. Volunteers and their pets visit a variety of venues including hospitals, hospices, nursing and care homes and special needs schools, and the benefit of these visits can be life changing – building confidence and self-esteem to people who need it the most.
Poppy the labradoodle has been visiting FitzRoy’s Timber Grove service for 5 months with her owner Phillip. Staff felt the people we support would benefit from having PAT dog visits, to help them relax, smile and communicate. They were on the waiting list for some time when they were finally introduced to Poppy and Phillip in March 2014.
Poppy has been visiting regularly ever since, bringing light and laughter with her every time. During her visits she may spend just a minute or two with some people or longer with others as they grow with confidence. Some people enjoy just stroking her, while others take her for a walk round the garden and play ball.
The transformation in the people we support during these visits is simply remarkable. Many enjoy the sensory feel of stroking Poppy while others laugh out loud when she bounces around or has a sneaky scratch.
MelÂ Simpson, Assistant Manager at Timber Grove, told usÂ â€œPoppy is extremely friendly and I think the staff get as much out of her visits as the people we support do! It’s a real pleasure to have her, and her owner Phillip, visit us.â€