How to engage with someone who doesn’t respond

Belma’s eyes closed lightly as she was transferred from her bed into her wheelchair and brought down the hall for breakfast. She was peaceful, but did not seem to respond much to the world around her. At times her hands were restless as they sat in her lap: picking at the chair, a blanket, orContinue reading “How to engage with someone who doesn’t respond”

The Cat Knew

“When did you guys get a cat?” Betsy’s daughter, Tina, asked. “Just two weeks ago,” I said. “Why?” Tina explained that the Memory Care unit cat, Fred Astaire, looked just like the cat that her family had growing up. She was surprised, and happy, to walk into her mother’s room one day and see him sittingContinue reading “The Cat Knew”

The Memory Care Cat

I did something this week that I’ve been hoping to do for a while: I picked out a cat for our Memory Care Neighborhood at work. The executive director of our community met me at the local animal shelter to help find the right cat. Immediately upon entering the “cat room,” I saw a sign forContinue reading “The Memory Care Cat”

Found: Dog

Adding the stuffed animals from Memorable Pets to our community was an immediate upgrade. The cats and dogs were a welcome sight to many of our residents who had always loved animals. Although many of them could no longer care for a living animal, these stuffed ones provided the same amount of comfort and happiness asContinue reading “Found: Dog”

A Fake Dog, A Real Connection.

Nancy walked into the room and gasped, spotting the two dogs. “Ohhh,” she said with excitement. Nancy slowly reached out her hand and put it in front of the dog’s mouth. She gave him the chance to smell her hand before she reached out to stroke his soft fur.  The piece of this story thatContinue reading “A Fake Dog, A Real Connection.”

The Cat’s Meow.

                                   Ellen* has Dementia with Lewy Bodies, so it makes her a little different from our other residents with Alzheimer’s disease. For the most part, Ellen keeps to herself. She can usually be found in her room with theContinue reading “The Cat’s Meow.”

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