Senior citizens can now reap the benefits of pet therapy from a robot instead of live animals.
The device, called the Huggler, emits a variety of sounds when stroked, tickled, or squeezed.
A*Star scientist Dr Tan Yeow Kee, who invented the Huggler, said the device promotes mental stimulation and helps relieve loneliness and depression - all benefits of traditional pet therapy.
The device is being used at the Hougang branch of St Luke's Eldercare as part of a pilot. Dr Tan hopes to roll out the product internationally within the next two years.