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Meet the goats

We have already hosted lizards, snakes, geckos, alpacas and now, the latest in our series of animal therapy sessions has yielded pygmy goats.

These special animals are known for their calm, gentle natures. The three visitors, who came along with their handlers, definitely had those attributes but were also chosen because they love to interact with people.

An interlude of sunshine allowed residents to meet the goats in the garden at the Chiswick – with a gazebo on stand-by, just in case of a shower. No such shelter was needed and as residents stroked and fed the animals, you could see the summer smiles on their faces. It was pleasing to see humans and goats connecting and exchanging eye contact. The occasion sparked some happy memories of childhood with one resident, in particular, fondly recalling a visiting to a farm as a youngster. 

Animal therapy has been shown to work wonders with mental and physical health, calming those who may feel anxious or agitated, provoking a response in people who have difficulty in communicating and just bringing a sense of joy and wellbeing. It can lower blood pressure and promote the release of endorphins, a mood enhancer.

Of course, we appreciate that not everyone feels such a connection with animals and this is one of the reasons why we try to offer as broad a range of activities as possible, here at The Chiswick Nursing Centre. Hopefully, there is something to suit and stimulate everyone.

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