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In high school I took care of my grandfather who had
Alzeihmer's. One of the things I noticed was that the biggest
part of his life were the animals in our house. Half of his
meals, including any chewed up but undigestable remains,
were fed to our dog. He would spend many hours smoking his
cigar and watching the rice birds at our bird feeder. He
would get up from his chair to pet the cat. It's no big mystery
in today's world that animals are very therapeutic. However,
from what I have seen of nursing homes, there are no in-house
Now, consider all of the kids who beg and beg their parents
to have pets, but their parents refuse. Wouldn't it be great
to have an exchange system where the kids got to have pets,
but they lived at nursing homes? The kids would walk them,
pick up their poop, and feed them everyday afterschool. And
for kids whose grandparents live in other cities, this might be
a good way for those kids to have surrogate grandparents.
I realize that there is an issue of people who are allergic to
pets. However, I think there would be plenty of nursing
homes without pets that could serve these people.
[tangent] Jaytee, the psychic terrier
A.k.a. a dog that runs back and forth a lot. Skeptical scientist fails to reproduce pro-parapsychology media star's results after carefully defining the experiment. [jutta, Jun 08 2002]
An alternate proposal [magrak, Jun 09 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]
Pat dogs - wonderful concept
[po, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 21 2004]
||I just wanted to clarify that my idea is not that there
should be animal visits to nursing homes. I watch Animal
Planet all the time and I am aware that that service
||I like the idea, but doubt it would fly.
||If you can think of any thing that will forestall the daily execution of perfectly good dogs and cats at your local pound, then you have done good.
||I spent my two volunteer hours at the pound again today and had a new insight--sure, dogs have tested out as intellectually no more advanced than a 3-year old human, at best. But they definitely are on par with us, at least, and perhaps more advanced in some ways, as regards emotional range and depth. There's a book called, "Dogs Never Lie About Love", not the greatest book, I read it, but an astute title. Not to mention the scientific research that demonstrates that some are psychic.
||Did the dogs take a written or oral exam?
||The kids want pets, but can't have them. The elderly people want companionship and someone to take care of them. Here's the exchange I propose: the kids take the animals and live in the nursing home, and the old folks live in the kids' houses and get taken care of by their parents! Everybody's happy. Hmm... wait..
||The kids would walk them, pick up their poop, and feed them every day - but the dog would not live at the house. Around here, the kids do not want to walk them, pick up the poop, and feed them. The only thing the kids DO want is the dog living in their house. This would take away the only part of owning a dog that they do like, and give them only the parts that they don't like. -Well at least they wouldn't ask for another one...
||I really think this is a fantastic idea. +