Pet therapy welcomed at Shepparton Villages

By Madeleine Byron

Residents at Shepparton Villages have been treated to care of a different kind.

That care came in the shape of a wet nose, four giant paws and a big fluffy tail and went by the name of Crosby.

The six-year old Bernese mountain dog was brought in for a visit by his owner Melissa Lyon.

“We have lots of pets that come in, especially visiting dogs, but we have never had a dog the size of Crosby before,” facility public relations, marketing and fundraising manager Jo Breen said.

She said animal therapy had an incredible impact on the residents.

“One gentleman hadn’t been well and the next minute he’s seen Crosby and he’s up out of his chair and going in for a pat,” Ms Breen said.

Crosby was given his own volunteer identification tag and spent the day meeting and greeting residents with a handshake or a drop or two of drool.

“He’s just a beautiful gentle giant,” Ms Breen said.   

“We’ll just walk around to all the sites and let the residents have a pat and a feel of his coat.”

As for the next visitor?

Perhaps it will be of the feline variety for those who love cats.