Exotic creatures from slithering snakes to terrifying tarantulas were introduced to elderly residents at a Teesside care home.
Animal handling firm ZooLab took the creatures to Ingleby Care Home, in Ingleby Barwick, Stockton-on-Tees.
Alongside the snakes and spiders were lizards and rats – all for the residents and their family members to touch and hold.
Animal handling therapy sessions have proven benefits for those living in care, boosting their mood, confidence and activity levels.
Resident Bob Tulip said: “I’ve never held a snake before. It was quite smooth and not slimy like I thought it would be.”
Carol Singleton, home manager of Ingleby Care Home, on Lamb Lane, said: “Many of the residents and their family members were interested in touching the creatures.
“The bravest even held the snake and lizard. It was great to see their faces light up when they were brought in and it sparked a lot of conversation.
“The animal therapy sessions have been run in several Hill Care homes in the past and have proven hugely beneficial – with residents talking about their encounters for days afterwards.
“We’d like to thank ZooLab for coming along and we can’t wait to see who or what they bring along next time.”