Stuffed animals can help people with various health conditions. The organization Memorable Pets makes stuffed animals which help people with Alzheimer’s.
Memorable Pets was started back in 2010 by Bettina Dickson Rusher and her sister in their mother’s honor. She passed away in 2011 from Alzheimer’s at the age of 88. And she was also the first one to have a Memorable Pet.
Stuffed animals for Alzheimer’s patients are proven to be an enormous benefit for those in mid-late stages of the disease where age-related regression occurs, the company notes.
“Our customers are family caregivers and members, professional caregivers, hospice organizations, senior care facilities (nursing homes) with Memory Care units and Hospitals. Also, we give generous discounts to professionals in the geriatric field”, Bettina told StuffedParty.
Creating a memorable experience
“We began by giving them away as gifts to the veterans on my mother’s secure Alzheimer’s unit in KY. The vets could often recall something about their past family pets. We matched them up with a Memorable Pet, only then we still did not realize we would soon be creating a business. We have now sold to all 50 states and 11 countries”, she said.
The company donates 10% of sales to care and research of Alzheimer’s to fight the disease, she added. Memorable pets currently has quite a few stuffed animals, over 100, mostly a wide variety of stuffed dogs and cats. They are adult appropriate, Bettina added. It has expanded to baby dolls as well.
And these are not just regular toys. They meet all US federal safety standards for institutional use. “Our product criteria was developed with two geriatric specialists in our area. We work with family members, Memory Care Units in LTC facilities, hospice organizations and most recently hospitals. Greenwich Hospital in CT was on their local news because they created a Kindness Cart program for their older patients. This cart features Memorable Pets in their “adopt a pet program”, Bettina tells us.
People don’t realize how something as small as a Memorable Pet can help their loved one with moderate to severe dementia, she added.