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Keepmoat’s newest recruit brings joy to elderly residents

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Keepmoat’s newest recruit brings joy to elderly residents

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Published by Becki Ord for Keepmoat in Housing and also in Communities

Sue Beard (Senior Resident Liaison Officer at Keepmoat) with resident John Masson and Marlon. Sue Beard (Senior Resident Liaison Officer at Keepmoat) with resident John Masson and Marlon.

A site manager’s dog has been recruited by housing specialist Keepmoat to bring enjoyment to elderly residents at a residential home in Nottingham. 

Black Labrador Marlon, who belongs to Keepmoat site manager Lee James, has been visiting The Oaks Residential Care Home every Friday as part of a dog petting initiative set up for the residents. 

Keepmoat is currently carrying out extensive refurbishment work to part of The Oaks on behalf of Nottingham City Council, in order to convert existing unused accommodation into additional residential care beds.

Paula Lyons, Business Support Officer at The Oaks, had been keen to introduce a dog petting initiative for some time, and so she jumped at the chance to meet Marlon.

Paula found Marlon to be very comfortable around the public and, after carrying out a risk assessment, arranged for him to attend a ‘Meet and Greet’ at the care home.

Marlon has now become a regular on site, visiting every Friday to sit with residents and help them to keep their independence by walking to local amenities.

Spending time with animals is thought to have a positive effect on the elderly, especially those with dementia, and Marlon’s gentle manner has had a remarkable effect on the residents of The Oaks.

One of the residents commented: “It is a pleasure to see Marlon on a Friday, it really brightens my day. I can remember having pets of my own when I was younger, and it brings back many happy memories.

“I love the feel of his fur, and he is such a friendly dog.”

Lee added: “Marlon loves all the attention he is getting as well as the treats! I am very proud that he is helping residents and it’s great to fetch my dog to work every Friday.”

Marlon, now eight years old, has previously worked as a reading dog at a school in Nottingham to help with children’s self-esteem. 

Keepmoat is also working in partnership with Nottingham City Homes and Nottingham City Council to deliver the award-winning Secure Warm Modern home improvement program across the city.

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