Charity Stobbe, aka Little Bo Peep, and her goat Butterscotch say hi to Cascades Care Community resident Marta Gammeter during a visit on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021. (Eric J. Welsh/Chilliwack Progress)

Charity Stobbe, aka Little Bo Peep, and her goat Butterscotch say hi to Cascades Care Community resident Marta Gammeter during a visit on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021. (Eric J. Welsh/Chilliwack Progress)

Therapy goats bring smiles to seniors at Chilliwack’s Cascades Care Community

Charity Stobbe brought mini silky fainting goats Stevie Nicks and Butterscotch for a visit

Residents at Chilliwack’s Cascades Care Community were delighted by three unexpected visitors Thursday (Oct. 28).

Little Bo Peep dropped by, accompanied by two of her sheep.

Little Bo Peep was recently-retired elementary school teacher Charity Stobbe, and the sheep were two of her therapy goats, Stevie Nicks and Butterscotch, dressed up in Halloween outfits sewn by Stobbe.

There were lots of ‘awwwws’ and ‘so cutes’ as the trio moved from person to person, and Stobbe said she felt blessed being able to visit the seniors.

“It is super hard work holding the goat low enough for people to see and speaking slowly in a hot mask, but I love it,” she said. “The smiles on so many old wrinkly faces and the sparkling eyes are worth it.”

Stobbe, who taught young students for 35 years until she called it a career in 2020, breeds and trains mini silky fainting goats.

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She describes them as “super friendly with longer hair.”

Stevie Nicks lived in a Kindergarten room for a year, and Stobbe said Nicks is “an old pro at being calm.”

“One man fed Stevie part of his cookie,” she laughed. “A woman said she used to milk a goat when she was young, and another resident thought the goats were dogs, so I put his hand on the horns.”

While the older goat had no problems following Stobbe around the room, young Butterscotch took time to settle in. When they first arrived, she made a move for the exit, and Stobbe had to reel her in. But after a half hour or so, Butterscotch felt more comfortable.

“Butterscotch is learning and today she snuggled in the laps of a few residents,” Stobbe said. “One time she fell asleep with her little furry face snuggled against an old wrinkly face.”

Stobbe started doing this in September and hopes to go once a month, preferably with three goats (and a helper) in tow.

“Usually Reisling comes along too, and she is super curious and runs to seniors,” Stobbe said. “As a retired teacher who lives on a farm and loves animals, I enjoy volunteering in seniors homes with my goats.”


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eric.welsh@theprogress.com

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