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Featured Animal Assisted Therapy Dog

Please Note: The dog in the accompanying photograph is the subject of the story, but any persons shown are probably not those in the story.

Photograph of dog

Our most recent visit to the hospital was very meaningful for Mia, my rescue poodle-mix, and me. Our first stop was to see an end-of-life patient who had requested a pet therapy visit.

The patient was a man who has been an animal lover all his life. It was hard for him to speak and move his hands, but his face lit up when he saw Mia. She sat quietly beside him, watching him look at her. I asked her to do “paw” for him, and he liked it so much that he asked her to do it, too. Before we left, I took an instamatic photo of the patient and his wife with Mia. His wife was crying happy tears.

The next special interaction was with a unresponsive man who had been in the hospital for a while. Before we arrived, a staff member had asked this patient if he wanted to meet a therapy dog. With the nurses watching from the doorway, I carried Mia into his room and saw a big smile on his face. He didn’t speak, but when the nurse asked him if he liked Mia, he said “yaaaa!" He petted Mia very gently and continued smiling throughout our visit. Everyone was so happy to see the positive effect her visit made on him.

Mia has been a therapy dog with Love On 4 Paws for 10+ years. She is as excited now to go on a visit as she was when we first started. She gives lots of love and gets love and treats in return. She has no idea the positive impact she makes for those she meets. For her, this is the best job ever!

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