Since starting my job as a therapy dog with Cypress HomeCare Solutions, I have learned a lot about the different things my older friends have to deal with. I feel very lucky to be a dog, especially after I heard about dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
This week, I got to go to a special meeting at a place called Cameron House where my friend Laurie Fox talked about her mother Opal and how she would take care of her when she had Alzheimer’s. Although I didn’t get to meet Cameron (even though I was at his house), I did get to learn about the many ways people can comfort their loved ones with this disease. Laurie talked about bringing rosemary to Opal to smell and just going with it when her mother thought she was in another time or place. I really liked hearing how the power of touch is important for people with Alzheimer’s — one of my favorite things is being pet and loved by humans!
Laurie even said that animals are helpful for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia because we remind them of pets they had in the past. I can’t help but get really warm and fuzzy knowing that I am making a difference for people on my visits. Seeing people’s smiles and feeling their comfort really makes my day, and now I understand why they sometimes call me “Rover.”