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Family

Pet Pals Program



Your dog is welcome to visit at the Hebrew Home for the Aged at Riverdale! Pet visits have proven to be therapeutic and enjoyable for residents, pets and owners. Our residents are always alert for visits by animals, and react with enthusiasm and love. Pets have proven themselves to be valuable companions to people, and we want to continue this relationship!

We are inviting dogs to participate in our "Pet Pals" program. We have three different programs. Please decide which program is best for you and your pet.

1. Pet Visitors

If you and your pet will be visiting your relative only, the dog is registered but the owner need not register as a volunteer.

2. Pets and People Together

If you and your pet would like to visit residents throughout the Hebrew Home, the dog is registered, and the owner registers as a volunteer and accompanies the dog on his/her scheduled visits.

3. Pets Alone

Once the dog is accepted into this program, he/she is accompanied on the visits and the activities with a member of our regular Therapeutic Staff. His/her visits are scheduled into our weekly activity schedules, and the dog becomes an active member of the Therapeutic Activities Program.

 All three programs require the following prior to the first visit.

• Veterinary documentation for your pet must be current and on file in the Volunteer Services Department.

• The Volunteer Services Department must interview the pet and owner; unfortunately, not all pets are appropriate for visiting in a nursing home. The dog will be observed for responses to various situations that he/she may encounter on the units: noise, petting, unpredictable movements, comfort with wheelchairs and walkers, unfamiliar smells. If the interview is successful, pets will receive a bandanna identifying them as an "official’ pet.

The following points are of the utmost importance regarding your pets:

1. Pets are not allowed in any of the eating areas at the Home.

2. At all times pets are to be kept on their leashes.

3. Please clean up after your pets when they are outside.

Thank you for your interest in our Pet Pals Program! We hope that your visits with your pet are rewarding and enriching. For further information, please contact the Volunteer Services Department, at (718) 581-1404.

Pet Pals Application

Get the Facts

The Hebrew Home at Riverdale has three professionally trained dogs who go to work each day with staff members.  Under the supervision of the therapeutic activities department the working dogs visit residents throughout the day.



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