ST's "Mind Your Body" section has a story on how a bed-ridden Mr Lu, who's suffering from ALS, is being helped through his ailment by the 6 cats who live in the house with the family. The cats keep his mind off his worries, and their tendency to snuggle up to whomever they like and trust also give him some relief from his physical pain as well.
The same cats have helped the younger Lu through an episode of depression, and cope with his O levels.
Despite there being 6 cats, there is no mess. They just require food and water, and a clean sandbox. Not bad for low cost, low maintenance family healthcare.
Only 1 thing I can say about this story: I bet they don't live in an HDB flat.