It was smiles all round for residents at Cragielea Care Centre in Renfrew, after care home staff surprised them with a very special visit from Fergus and Tosh – two friendly alpacas – and their minders.

The visit was part of the care home’s pet therapy programme, designed to encourage residents to stay active and happy while socialising with other residents. The visit was a long-time in the making, with activities like this one being forced on hold for more than 18 months due to the coronavirus restrictions.

Fergus and Tosh provided gentle company for residents, who enjoyed petting and feeding them carrot sticks. Those who were able, even took them on a tour around the gardens.

Sheila Inshaw, Service Manager at Cragielea Care Centre, said: “Community activities like this can really help boost morale – for residents and our colleagues alike – so it was lovely to welcome the alpacas for a safe visit, especially after months of planning by our Activities Coordinator. We look forward to organising more activities in the home.”

Lindsay McKechnie, Activities Coordinator at Cragielea Care Centre, said: “Activities like this make such a difference for our residents, especially after almost two years of keeping residents socially distanced and having to cancel outside activities due to the pandemic. All the residents really enjoyed meeting Fergus and Tosh and we hope to have them back soon for more smiles all round!”