It is already a year since Brontes started working as an canine therapy dog. With not knowing what to expect we together entered the world of pain, unhappiness and loneliness. We didn’t expect it will be such a hard work and also not sure that we will be able to help but after first session with ill children I have seen their excited eyes and smiles, at this point I was sure and certain this is the way to go.
Brontes proved to have sixth sense and to recognize positive and negative emotions and energy. He found out that thanks to his special skill he can choose himself patients that really need him and he started to work with them. I was shocked by his behaviour and I believe it is something special only dogs or animals can sense.
Some patients can be sad that Brontes does not spend so much time with them and he decided to be more with old lady with sclerosis multiplex which is shaking and struggles to put her hand on Brontes. To make it fait, I always ask Brontes to pay attention to others as well and entertain them with passing them their slippers, take the glasses off or show some other tricks he knows. He can be comedian as well and it is great to sense the better mood in hospital at this point. Patients can forget for some time they are in hospital as it is something unusual for hospitals to have big dog there who is even allowed in beds .
When I take Brontes to the Children psychiatric department it is always little bit chaotic as all children want his attention at the same time. Kids do throw ball and other objects to retrieve and they want to cuddle and they all scream and call him. My second smooth collie, lovely tri colour girl Eny comes and joins us. Even though she has not special training she is very calm and relaxed and loves children so much so every time we go to kids department she joins us.
Time is flying and it seems we visit hospital for ages now. Some people are leaving, some new ones are coming, it is never ending story. We have met many sad and unhappy people and I know we made them little bit happier and they had smiles on their faces after our visit.
Brontes managed to make one patient cry with happiness which was very touching story I would like to share. I was told by nurses that lady is very grumpy, unfriendly and even mean to staff. They recommended not to enter her room but as I mentioned before, Brontes has the special sixth sense and he decided to go straight to her even there we two other ladies in the room which were calling Brontes to come to them. Well, he decided to spend some time with her probably because of her worst condition. He gently put his head very close to her and gave her nice look. She could not move much but she turned her head towards Brontes. I explained we come to hospital on regular basis and if she wants Brontes can spend some time with her. She never looked at me, she was just staring at the dog so I told her his name is Brontes. She told Brontes “up” and he was ready to jump on her bed. It was very touching moment to see the patient to make a space on her bed for Brontes as nurces told me she never moves on her own.
I was nervous and wanted to help her but she gave me unfriendly look and said she can do it herself and that Brontes came to see he so she will make space on bed for him. She was so happy to pet him and hold him around his neck. Brontes was gently licking her hand and stare in her eyes. I saw little tears on her face and other two room mates were touched as well. When the nurse came to let us know the session is over and asked the patient who does she have in her bed. “An angel”, she replied.
Few weeks later I parked my car in front of hospital and we go for our weekly visit. Suddenly Brontes turns and runs into the park. All I can hear is “angel, angel” and I recognize the lady we visited previously. I wave at her and she told me she is trying to walk again as Brontes wished for that.
At this moment I am so happy and satisfied. I know there are more and more canine therapy dogs and it is great thing as ill people do need them. Dogs can do miracles and can be angles as well......