Friday, September 5, 2008

Animal Companions for Seniors in California

Creatures comforting

Couple share their wide assortment of adopted exotic animals with seniors

Published: Monday, August 18, 2008 at 4:30 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, August 18, 2008 at 6:05 a.m.

"It's a magical place."

Rob Lyon and his wife, Robin, help seniors feed some of the 70 animals on their Sonoma ranch. The pair also take their animals, including a camel, to nursing homes and retirement communities to visit with residents.
Robin and Rob Lyon have a ranch, E-I-E-I-O.
And on this most unusual ranch on a hill above Sonoma there is an emu, Doris, that the Lyons adopted after she was found injured and abandoned on the ninth hole of a Rohnert Park golf course.

There's also a locally renowned 1,750-pound camel, named Kazzy, who will duck into the bedroom of an ailing person and rest her great head on the bed, like a golden retriever.

And Chester, an African serval cat that struggled at birth at an Oklahoma zoo but now thrives with the Lyons. And a mellow, black-splotched white dog named Chester, whose master died in the 9/11 attacks. And, a dancing macaw parrot, Theo, that needed a home after its family broke up following a divorce.

In all there are 82 animals on Lyon Ranch, many quite exotic and most as hand tamed and cuddly as a kitten. Every one of the 82 has a story.

And so do the Lyons.

Complete Article

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