Charlie and Allie: I know that many assisted living facilities and nursing homes have dogs visit their facilities and interact with their residents. Are other types of animals welcome as well?
Charlie: In some instances, yes. We recently read an article about an exotic animal farm in Monroe, Washington, that takes animals such as llamas and baby kangaroos to schools, birthday parties, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities. The program, called “Roo to You,” is run by Teresa Wilmot, who says that she loves to spread the joy of animals, especially to senior citizens. Ms. Wilmot says “I know what great therapy they can be,” adding “the elderly are my passion.” Some of the program’s most popular animal visitors include its kissing llama and an eleven month old baby kangaroo named “Scooby Roo,” who Ms. Wilmot calls her “pouch potato.”
To read more about the “Roo to You” program, check out the full article at: http://www.monroemonitor.com/2013/06/18/kangaroos-lift-hearts-at-parties-retirement-homes/.
Please remember that animal visiting rules vary from facility to facility, so we encourage you to check with the administrative office of the facility before bringing a kangaroo or any other type of animal for a visit.