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Therapy dog brings joy to the elderly amidst this COVID-19 outbreak

As many fur parents already know, dogs have the innate ability to make a bad day better. Whether you’re stressed at work or overwhelmed with family issues, these canines can make you smile with just a wag of their tails and a pet on their noses. So, it’s not surprising why many dogs are being recommended by healthcare officials to aid in the therapy and recreation of the elderly and disabled.

In the United States, for instance, an organization called The Dog Alliance offers companies, community homes, and hospitals the “therapy dog service” to help them cope with the stress of their environment. However, because of the rise in COVID-19 cases in the US,  the dog-centered group have put their services on hold to ensure the safety and well-being of their staff and customers.

But among The Dog Alliance’s therapy dogs is a Great Dane named Tonka, whose owner Courtney Leigh thought of new way seniors in the Cedar Pointe Health and Wellness Suites can see and interact with the dog, without even having to leave their homes.

Screengrab from YouTube.com/kxan

According to kxan‘s report, Leigh would approach the windows of the elderly’s homes so they can wave and see Tonka’s smiling face.

“We learned that because of recent events, all therapy visits will be discontinued for safety purposes, of course. We really missed our visits and I thought, what could I do on my own to try and continue some of the ‘feel-good’ this wonderful dog gives to everyone. So they were kind enough to go [along] with this idea I had–can we visit just walking around outside?” she explained in the video.

Artwork designed by Ric John Brecio/ INQUIRER.net

By doing this, Leigh was able to brighten up the day of the residents and remind them that there’s still joy even in these trying times.

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