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Miniature horse brings smiles to seniors faces

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CHICO, Calif. . - Pumpkin is her name and therapy is her game.

Pumpkin, a 9-year-old miniature horse, makes frequent visits to assisted living centers and has a knack for putting smiles on the faces of seniors.

On Friday, Pumpkin and her owner, Laura Skinner, were at the Country village in Chico, where seniors enjoyed petting Pumpkin.

Skinner created a nonprofit group called Visits of Smiles for just this purpose.

She says Pumpkin has a positive therapeutic effect on sufferers of Alzheimer's and dementia. 

"We found that Pumpkin has an ability to speak to people who are suffering from Alzheimer's," said Skinner. "She opens doors to people who have Alzheimer's that haven't been opened before." 

If you'd like Pumpkin to pay a visit to your group you learn more on her Facebook page by searching "Visits of Smiles."      

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