PAWS NY Helps Senior Citizens Keep Their Pets

by Todd Briscoe
Todd is a LittleThings editor. He grew up in Texas and has lived in New York since 2003. He doesn't own a Boston terrier, but he will one day soon.

Beatrice Anderson is the loving owner of an adorable Bolognese dog named Lexus. When I asked Beatrice how she named her dog she said, “Well, I couldn’t afford the car, so…”

Beatrice has an infectious love of life, and one of her greatest joys is Lexus. Just like this 106-lb dog that visits senior homes, dogs and pets of all kinds provide an enormous amount of comfort and company for seniors, especially those who may be battling illness or fatigue.

When Beatrice began chemotherapy treatments and moved into a senior care center, she often found herself too weak to take Lexus on walks or to the veterinarian. A neighbor would often assist, but as Beatrice told me, she felt too guilty asking a neighbor to do this for free.

As a retiree, paying for such expensive medical treatments prohibited Beatrice from paying anyone to take care of Lexus. She found herself at a total loss when she realized she could no longer care for Lexus the way she needed.

Beatrice was kind enough to invite into her home to meet Lexus and to tell us the heartwarming story about an organization that has made an enormous impact on her life: PAWS NY.

PAWS NY works with volunteers who visit seniors in need to take care of their animals. They take dogs for walks, change litter boxes, and even foster the animals if the seniors need to go to the hospital. One of Beatrice’s volunteers is a young man named Dan Vellone who, along with other volunteers, comes to visit her a few times a week to walk Lexus.

When Dan came over to Beatrice’s house, Lexus ran to the front door to greet him, and you could see the appreciation on Beatrice’s face. It’s thanks to people like Dan that Beatrice can continue to keep one of the most cherished comforts in her life. We are so grateful to Dan and Beatrice for sharing their time and stories with us, and we hope you feel the same way.

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