This is bound to get your tear ducts working
A heartwarming scene unfolds at e Catalina Springs Memory Care Center in Oro Valley, Arizona. Elderly residents of the care center are participating in a new program bringing happy fuzzy memories back.
The innovative program called “Bottle Babies” assigns a baby kitten for each senior to feed and care, helping both helpless foster kitties and creating a connection between the patients and their feline friends.
The senior of the memory center struggle with memory loss and various related problems, including dementia or alzheimer.
Hamilton, the Center’s Health Services Director, thought this brilliant idea came after fostering kittens. She had Noticed the local animal Care Center needed help fostering the many newborn cats they had. Fostering a kitty is a 24-hour job, as those babies need to be fed every 2 hours, so finding volunteers can be difficult.
“This is extremely labor intensive, but only for a short period of time,” Hamilton told ABC News. “But for that period of time, it is very difficult to find fosters to take these kittens.”
Realizing this could prove to be beneficial for both sides, Hamilton decided to start the “bottle babies” program.
Caring for a pet can help the seniors in a variety of ways: reducing stress, loneliness and depression. Owning a cat or dog can also help seniors feel less isolated and more satisfied with their lives.
Include the physical benefits reducing of stress related illnesses, and you got the whole package.
“The kittens have enriched the lives in this center in indescribable ways,” Hamilton states.
“Many memories have started to resurface just by the act of caring for these babies,” she added. “People began to bring up long-forgotten memories of a cat or a dog they had as a child.”
Since starting the program in 2016, Catalina Springs’ has proved to be a huge success. Helping patients restore memories, and also caring for newborn kittens!
Frankly, we would like to see more initiatives like this one
“Loss of memory does not erase the ability to love — that’s really hardwired,” Hamilton said. “When you put a kitten into someone hands their faces just light up!”
We think this might just be the purrfect match!