Dementia dogs are an asset I wasn't aware of previously. Having had dogs all my life I was surprised to learn that many breeds make great caregivers for those living with dementia.
A dog trained to be a caregiver can perform many tasks and be a substantial help to their human counterparts. A dementia dog can break repetitive behaviors, calm anxieties, give someone a purpose, or return a lost loved one home. These are just a few examples of what a furry caregiver can offer.
Since learning about canine caregivers in early 2019, I talked to the executive director of the residence my Mom lives in. I wanted to get his opinion on the practicality of having a dementia dog working in their community. Honestly, I suspected more hesitation than I got. In hindsight, this shouldn't have been a surprise since they allowed Mom to have her dog when she moved in.
While speaking to Alberto, he brought up additional tasks a service dog can provide for seniors. At the conclusion of our conversation, we both agreed that learning more about a community level dementia dog might be a good idea.
Stay tuned for a future episode when I learn what I can about dementia dogs.
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