Little horse makes a big impact

Share Canberra's trusted news:
Maverick has a big fan in 81-year-old Henry Pearce, a resident at Uniting Mirinjani, Weston, who was reunited with the four-year-old miniature horse on Tuesday (December 15).

IT was a teary moment for staff at Uniting Mirinjani nursing home in Weston when Henry Pearce, 81, was reunited with Maverick, a four-year-old miniature horse.

In more normal times, Maverick visits nursing homes and hospitals for pet therapy but since the outbreak of covid, he has been prevented from visiting the elderly residents of Mirinjani from his home in Bungendore. 

Residents stayed in touch during the pandemic through weekly 45-minute “walks” around the farm over FaceTime. 

But with restrictions easing, Maverick was able to make his in-person return on Tuesday (December 15).

Uniting Mirinjani leisure and wellness co-ordinator Jo Sumner says she could tell from Henry’s excited face “how he felt about it”.

While Henry’s “a bit of a loner” and doesn’t have any family, Jo says he always comes out of his room for Maverick’s visits. 

When it comes to the miniature horse, Henry is the “leader of the pack”, says Jo.

“[Henry] walked [Maverick] over to his community and to all the residents.”

Pet therapy makes a big impact on residents, according to Jo, and with several more visits planned as the new “covid normal” is established, Henry won’t be the only resident excited to see Maverick continue to return.

Shirley Finnegan, 86, who is blind, also loves Maverick’s visits. And, “although she can’t see him, she can feel him,” Jo says. 

“He nuzzles her like he knows she can’t see him. Maverick even fell asleep in Shirley’s lap.”

Who Can You Trust?

In a world beleaguered by spin and confused messages, there's never been more need for diverse, trustworthy, independent journalism in Canberra.

Who can you trust? Well, for more than 25 years, "CityNews" has proudly been an independent, free, family-owned news magazine, serving the national capital with quality, integrity and authority. Through our weekly magazine and daily through our digital platforms, we constantly and reliably deliver high-quality and diverse opinion, news, arts, socials and lifestyle columns.

If you trust our work online and believe in the power of independent voices, I encourage you to make a small contribution.

Every dollar of support will be invested back into our journalism so we can continue to provide a valuably different view of what's happening around you and keep citynews.com.au free.

Click here to make your donation and you will be supporting the future of journalism and media diversity in the ACT.

Thank you,

Ian Meikle, editor

Previous articleCops release images of possible Club Lime thieves
Next articleCanberra prison will be corrected

Leave a Reply