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Heartwarming therapy dogs make elderly residents' day in care home

By Jessica Hehir-Smith & Nia Dalton

A pair of therapy dogs are bringing smiles to care home residents and it's touching the heart of people worldwide.

Redwalls Nursing Home, in Cheshire, regularly shares videos of the elderly people enjoying visits from therapy dogs, Floyd and Loki.

The duo belong to the centre's wellbeing coordinator, Jodie Solaiman, who organises all the events and fun experiences.

When Jodie first took gentle-natured Floyd into the care home, she wasn't sure how the residents would respond - but it was an overwhelming success.

Now, seven-year-old Japanese Spitz, Floyd, and ten-month-old Leonberger, Loki, frequently spend time with their favourite friends at the centre.

The therapy dogs lift their spirits immensely (Jodie Solaiman / Redwalls Nursin)

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Jodie, 25, said: "Dog therapy has been life-changing in our nursing home.

"It's so beneficial for the residents. I don’t think the dogs mind the attention either!

"It increases their mood, provides comfort, can reduce loneliness, lowers anxiety and much more.

"Even for the residents that are bed-bound, they still have the ability to experience the happiness that a dog can bring. Laughter is the best medicine!"

Residents look forward to their time with Loki (Jodie Solaiman / Redwalls Nursin)

Redwalls Nursing Home started posting videos to TikTok in May last year and now has 15,000 followers from across the globe.

Fans are obsessed with the canine visitors and how much the residents adore them too.

One person commented on their recent video: "The joy on the residents faces is too much", while another said: "So heartwarming and wholesome".

Bob was thrilled to have Loki in his arms (Jodie Solaiman / Redwalls Nursin)

Jodie hopes that their fun clips will help to spread awareness of the "endless benefits" of dog therapy.

She said: "You can see the happiness that our residents experience when the dogs come to visit.

"The positive reactions from the residents is why we have continued to provide dog therapy within our homes.

"We hope that it could encourage other homes to incorporate dog therapy into their care."

Floyd is so gentle with every resident (Jodie Solaiman / Redwalls Nursin)

Another TikTok account melting hearts is Winston the Good Boy Golden.

Golden retrievers Winston and Doug recently met their new-born baby sister for the very first time, and their reaction was adorable.

Doug presented a very sweet 'welcome home' gift - his favourite soft toy - while Winston showered her with affectionate kisses.

Mum Brennan Visser, 30, was almost brought to tears and when she shared the special gesture on her social media, followers were too.

Do you have a dog story to tell? Contact nia.dalton@reachplc.com.

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Dive Deeper:
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One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
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The Welsh teenager who wants to defy bullies' comments about her 'lazy' eye and become a model
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Get all your news in one place