West Farm residents received a very special visitor over the Easter weekend.
Smurf, a blind Shetland pony, was introduced to several residents during his visit including those who struggle to communicate and interact. Smurf’s owner is Lisa Walker, who runs Mini Pony Hire.
Research shows that animal therapy has significant positive effects on the wellbeing of those in elderly care, helping to make residents feel more relaxed and comfortable.
Residents were able to stroke, pet and speak to Smurf and this really helped to bring some residents out of their shell and encourage interaction.
Manager Trish Giles said: “It was incredible to see the impact Smurf had on residents both during his visit and for a long time after. The residents who met him were extremely happy and he created quite a stir! There was an air of excitement around the home with lots of conversation, smiles and laughter. He really helped to encourage the engagement of residents among one another and with staff which is an important part of their care. The Easter eggs he delivered too also went down a treat!”
Anna Cullis, a resident at West Farm, added: “What a lovely little fella. His mane is really thick, and I loved his bunny ears too!”
"I am very pleased with how my mother has settled in and generally how supportive and caring the staff are. This has given us peace of mind knowing that she is safe & well looked after. Thank you."
"Our mum has been a resident at Cramlington House for over a year and we have nothing but praise for the friendly, approachable staff and management. We always feel like part of an extended family and when we visit nothing is too much bother. We are completely happy with the standard of care, support and understanding we all receive as a family."
"From the first day, I knew it was the place for my mum. Clean, friendly staff, lovely environment! My mum would not get the opportunity to do the activities she is experiencing if she was not in Cramlington House. It is home from home and we can visit anytime. I can't say enough of how great Cramlington House is. "
"This is an absolutely superb care facility. The staff say that this is the home of the residents, in which they work - and they evidence that philosophy every day. In the last months of our mother's long life, we took comfort form the fact that she was safe and secure, being well-fed and looked after. The entire care team are brilliant. "
"All the staff at West Farm have provided such wonderful care, compassion and support to my auntie. We both feel incredibly lucky to have found West Farm, it’s been the perfect home for my auntie. I can honestly say, hand on heart, every aspect of the care provided by each member of staff at West Farm has been outstanding."