Dachshunds are the best medicine, according to a new therapy program bringing canines and Port Macquarie's aged care residents together.
Port Macquarie Dachshund Group (PMDG) members and their four-legged friends are visiting Emmaus aged care in Port Macquarie on a weekly basis, after a successful trial run on June 18.
Lifestyle officer Louisa Powell said the centre, operated by St Agnes Parish, is seeing immediate benefits.
"The memories that the visit brings up and the smiles that it brings for them are really special," said Ms Powell.
"You can see the benefit immediately, they relate to them straight away.
"We were approached about a month ago and straight away we wanted to have a dog program because most of the residents have had a dog during their lives.
"We rotate which parts of the building we are going to and when it warms up we could go out into the court yard.
"It's a very simple but effective program, the smiles are free and everyone is happy."
PMDG leader Jean Ballands said about five people and up to nine dogs could see at least 40 residents during each visit.
"We wanted it to be easy by coming in for an hour to meet the residents regularly," she said.
"We're also thinking of things we can do such as sing some songs or play music and games just to entertain them.
"The visits benefit the dachshunds with interaction and positive rewards for good behaviour."
The group will be fundraising for Dachshund Rescue Australia with a dachshund fashion parade at Blue Illusion, Port Macquarie at 1pm on July 20.
Fifteen per cent of the money raised through sales on the day will also be donated to help PMDG canine member, Ziggy who is suffering from Cushing's Disease.
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