Japan will get its first nursing home for dogs with round-the-clock monitoring by doctors and a team of puppies to help aging pooches feel younger, a pet products company said Wednesday.

Owners pay 98,000 yen (US$800) a month to keep their dogs at the Soladi Care Home for pets, which opens Friday, according to a joint release by Soladi Co. and the Endo Veterinary clinic in Tochigi, eastern Japan.

Veterinarians at the home will offer round-the-clock monitoring, and residents will be fed specially fortified food, the release said.

The home, which can accept 20 dogs at one time, will also employ puppies to play with the aging dogs to help them keep fit and feel younger, the release said.

Analysts say that a boom in pet ownership in Japan, coupled with better health care and a more balanced diet, has led to a surge in elderly pets in Japan.

That has spurred doting owners to turn to vitamins, aromatherapy and even acupuncture to help their companions through their old age.