San Diego dementia patients get help from robotic pets

Posted at 4:00 PM, Oct 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-04 21:06:00-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Thousands of San Diego County residents suffer from memory loss and that number is expected to grow. New technology is offering some relief to patients and their families.

Naomi Sydler receives care for dementia at Glenbrook Health Center.

“It’s difficult to see the people that you love the most becoming a little less than what they were,” says Sadler’s daughter Susan.

That’s where a tiny robotic puppy named Mr. Ruffles comes in. It acts like a live companion dog for dementia patients.

“He’s become my buddy, my buddy,” says Sydler.

According to Alzheimers San Diego, the number of people living with some form of dementia has jumped to 85,000. 

Phil Padilla with Glenbrook Health Center notices an improvement in his patients with robotic pets.

“When they don't have a sense of comfort they feel agitated, they become restless, so the robotic pets provide comfort and they become part of the family,” says Padilla.