LORAIN COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - The holidays can be an exciting time for so many of us, but this can also be a lonely time of the year for others.
That's why a local organization called the Visiting Angels make it a point to bring their four-legged friends with them when they stop in to see some area seniors.
The Visiting Angels of Lorain County partners with the Friendship Animal Protective League in Elyria to bring shelter dogs and cats to places like the Rose Senior Living Facility in Avon.
Twice a month, for at least a couple of hours, the normally quiet senior living facility gets loud with laughter and smiles everywhere.
"Once you hold a puppy, you're done!" said Frank Davidson.
Holding the kittens and puppies doesn't just bring out joy in the residents. Sometimes, it brings back old memories too.
Dr. Richard Varga, a resident at the facility, was singing to the kitten he was holding and remembered back another time.
"We had a cat when I first married. Everything went well until my daughter was born, and the cat ran away. She was no longer the star. A male cat caught her and bit her, and she came home to stay," said Varga.
In the unit where patients with memory issues live, suddenly everyone can remember how good it feels to snuggle up with a furry friend.
"They love to interact with the puppies and dogs and the kittens. It's really popular. They really love it," describes Aaron Olson, the owner of the Visiting Angels of Lorain County.
For at least a little while, the seniors seem to forget their age, and the shelter dogs and cats forget they aren't at home.
In the moment when the seniors and shelter animals meet and cuddle, all anyone seems to feel is what we all crave - love.