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‘Truly heart-warming’ - care home residents welcome new high-tech pets

PUBLISHED: 16:02 22 September 2020 | UPDATED: 16:55 22 September 2020

Margaret Varvel and Nora Parker Residents Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney Hall

Margaret Varvel and Nora Parker Residents Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney Hall

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Residents at a Norfolk care home have welcomed toy pet dogs as their new companions.

Interactive pets at Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney HallInteractive pets at Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney Hall

The team at Bilney Hall care home near Dereham have welcomed the electronic pets, which are designed to move, make noises and feel like real dogs.

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Many of the home’s residents live with dementia and the team has found that the movement and noises made by the pets can be comforting.

Home manager Nikki Shaw said: “This is a really unique way for us to bring a completely new dynamic into the home, which is making a positive difference to our residents. Many of the people who live here have enjoyed family pets or animals throughout their lives, and they miss the companionship that dogs and cats can bring.

Margaret Varvel and Nora Parker Residents Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney HallMargaret Varvel and Nora Parker Residents Bilney Hall. Picture: Bilney Hall

“The reactions we’ve witnessed since the dogs have been introduced is truly heart-warming.”


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