Life

Robotic Pets Keep Oblivious Seniors Company

An Alabama senior care home has come up with a way to help its elderly residents deal with loneliness during the coronavirus pandemic: by supplying them with robotic pets.

Crystal Crim, administrative director for the Middle Alabama Area Agency on Aging, says the mechanical animals are the perfect companions, providing company to old folks “without the physical challenges of having to feed, pick up after or take care of an animal in a traditional sense.”

The idea has even made its way across the pond, where a British retirement home has also employed the services of cyborg critters to keep its residents entertained. “They promote a very relaxing ­environment and bring joy, often ­triggering memories of their pets,” says Hythe View Care Home’s Heather Heath. “They may be ­mechanical pets, but they’re very ­lifelike — and many of the residents with dementia believe them to be real.”

Could robotic pets soon become popular with everyone? Are you worried that robots might someday take over the world?


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