For the last several years of her life, Rob's mother lived in a nursing home. He visited her several times a week and he sometimes took Lucy along with him. Lucy was glad to go and visit with the
residents and the nursing staff, and most of them were happy to see her.
There were several residents who would come wheeling themselves out into the corridor in their wheelchairs as soon as they realized that Lucy was there.
Lucy was a small dog and sometimes Rob would lift her onto a bed so she could visit with her fans. She would cuddle next to them or lick a hand. She would stand up beside a wheelchair for petting. She brought smiles to lots of faces and we heard stories about their dogs, some of which had to be given up when they moved to the nursing home.
Lucy was not a therapy dog or a service dog. She was simply a visitor. She went to say hello to her friends and bring them some happiness.
Rob has continued to make several trips a year to visit the nursing home. He likes to chat with the staff and although few of the residents are the same, he likes to walk down the hall and chat with whoever wants to chat. Lucy went with him until her death in August of 2008. Since then he's gone alone.
Last night Rob wanted to wish those at the nursing home a happy Thanksgiving and he selected Sky to go with him. Sky is quiet and gentle, doesn't jump on people and obeys pretty well. This was his first nursing home visit and I was a little worried about how he would react.
Again, Sky is not a therapy dog, he is a visitor.
Although he was a little shy at first, Sky was not afraid of wheelchairs or walkers and was willing to sit and let people talk to him and eventually to pet him. He did very well on his first trip and will probably visit often. The best part for him was the kind nurse who gave him a whole piece of apple cake. That's enough to make this big boy think well of the experience.