I have heard of therapeutic dogs, therapeutic cats and even a therapeutic horse -- but a therapeutic Kangaroo?
Bindi is a 9-month-old red kangaroo that owner and nurse Misty Cooper brings to work with her to the Fairview Fellowship Home.
To say the residents love her would be an understatement.
Because of their disposition, kangaroos make perfect sense for therapy animals.
“They were just so quiet and gentle. It’s like holding a baby without the noise because they don’t make a whole lot of noise.” Cooper said.
This is the third kangaroo for Misty and the facility, and with all of them they seem to have a compassion for sick patients, even those in hospice care.
“Rider the last one, his special friend he would just lay there with him probably for the last two weeks that we had him here, and they just had a special bond.” Cooper said.
None of the kangaroos have gone through special training, everything is purely instinctual. But there is definitely something special about the animals.
“Some of the ladies out there are almost nonverbal, they don’t say a lot, but they will talk to her,” Cooper said. “And the generation we have here now, they didn’t grow up saying I love you, but if you notice every time I handed her off, it was ‘I love you, I love you.’”
Kangaroos are not classified exotic so there are no special requirements to have them.
However, they are a lot of work, and a really high fence is a must. Bindi also receives regular bathing and grooming.
Unfortunately, because she is close to the size capacity for the diapers her therapy time is coming close to an end.
Bindi has become so popular she even has her own Facebook page.