July 29, 2010

Pet Therapy

Our hospital recently launched a new volunteer program that’s proving to be a howling success. Sure to bring a smile to everyone’s face, our new therapy dogs come on site three days a week. Administering a special healing balm that only canines can provide, they arrive wearing their own photo ID badge clipped to their collars and commence meandering their way to each unit spending time with patients, staff, and visitors. Nearly everyone lights up when they arrive and our office is no exception. In fact, we’ve given strict instructions to the program leader and dog owners alike to always stop by for a visit whenever these special paws step onto the premises.

Yesterday Chance stopped by for a visit. The last time he came he was a bit nervous as we showered him with attention. It was his first visit to the hospital and he missed his canine brother and sister at home. I felt sorry for him and wanted to do something to make him feel a little more at home the next time he came, so I placed a bowl of dog biscuits on my desk. This time when Chance arrived I escorted him back to my desk, placed the bowl of treats on my chair, and let him sniff away. I knew he was beginning to relax when I felt him lean on my leg. Soon he laid down, closed his eyes, and enjoyed a little massage.

Bless his little heart he even nibbled up a last crumb from his biscuit as he soaked up the attention. His soft coat was white, black, grey, and tan. Cute as a bug's ear. After his time of TLC in our department he went on to the Emergency Room to visit someone in need and then headed home for the day. I suspect he bragged a bit about his hard day at work when he got home to his brother and sister.

We can't wait for another dose of pet therapy!

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