It has been scientifically proven that interaction between humans and pets increases the dopamine levels in one's brain (the chemicals that make us feel good). Organisations take dogs to visit the elderly, the disabled, children in hospital and orphanages because they know contact with animals will increase the physical and emotional well being of these people.
My friend Lilian is in her 80's. She moved to a retirement village with a little dog called Dee Dee. Last week after 16 years of companionship, her dog had to be put down. Lilian says of Dee Dee "She gave me more than I ever gave her. She looked after me! When I came home she was always welcoming. She was another breath in the house and the sound of her snoring was music to my ears. I relied on her for 24 hours of affection."
Lilian is not allowed to replace her pet. So who will wake Lilian up every day? Who will walk with her in the evenings, watch TV with her and sleep by her bed at night? Who will fill the hole in Lilian's heart?
My mother also lives in a retirement village and would love to have a dog to cuddle and take for walks. But the rules say no pets.
Who are these cretins who make these archaic rules? Wake up!
Pets are critical for the emotional and physical well being of many of the elderly and should be considered a therapeutic necessity.