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Pet Friendly Independent Living Resident: Ruth Reitan

Dana Larsen
By Dana LarsenMarch 8, 2012

This is a story of the bond between senior, Ruth Reitan, and her furry companion, Angel. Ruth and Angel bring smiles to those who live at St. Paul’s Senior Homes and Services, displaying the importance of pet therapy in seniors’ lives.

St. Paul’s Senior Homes & Services is a pet friendly community that welcomes furry friends as companions for their senior citizens. One of their residents, Ruth Reitan, came to their community with her dog, Angel. Ruth and Angel are quite a cute duo who enjoy sunny, San Diego weather and enhance the lives of the residents at their independent living community.

Learn more about this charming lady and why having a pet at her San Diego senior living community has helped her enjoy her golden years…

A Tale of Ruth and Angel: Why Pet Friendly Senior Living Is So Important

Ruth was born in Minnesota in early March almost ninety years ago. She spent most of her life in Minnesota and North Dakota until her family moved to Hemet, California. Ruth’s family didn’t have a huge affinity for animals—but when her husband passed away and she moved from Hemet to San Diego—she was inspired to steward a chihuahua. After her chihuahua passed away, she had no intention of getting a second one. Then she happened to get involved with a local humane society. A volunteer asked her to hold a special dog named ‘Angel.’ She had a connection with the animal and knew instantly that she needed to care for this six-year old dog!

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Angel is the centerpiece of Ruth’s life. She goes with Ruth on long walks around beautiful Banker’s Hill, the neighborhood where she lives independently at St. Paul’s Manor. “Angel leads the way on our walks,” says Ruth. “She has taken us on some memorable walks throughout the neighborhood as everyone marvels at how calm and cute she is.”

Angel is beloved by St. Paul’s Manor Residents. Many Residents know Angel by name. “She (Angel) is the Resident and I am the caregiver,” jokes Ruth.

Ruth moved to St. Paul’s in the spring of 2011 to be with her peers in a social, friendly and warm senior living environment. Angel was quickly welcomed by the St. Paul’s community and adored by not only Ruth, but also other residents. In fact, the cute duo get frequent visits in their apartment.

One of Ruth’s favorite things to do with Angel is to hold her on her lap as she watches the sun set over the horizon during the spring and summer months. It’s also nice that pleasant, San Diego weather allows Ruth and Angel to be outside daily—and enjoy everything that retirement has to offer.

Ruth is grateful that Angel is so well behaved and friendly. Mostly, though, she’s happy to have a loving dog as a companion that is revered by so many in her community.

Dana Larsen
Dana Larsen
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