Archive for the ‘Memorable Pet Therapy Visits’ Category

I Remember Ceilidh!

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

An alumni of the recovery center showed up outside when Karen and Ceilidh were leaving. He flipped out when he saw Ceilidh – it was a reuniting, she was loving him up and he was crying, telling her that she “was such an important part of his recovery and being able to stay drug free”.  He was grinning ear to ear and introduced her to everyone around him, truly joyous.

Paige is Serenaded!

Saturday, April 14th, 2012

Sandy Chang and pet partner Paige had a great visit Friday morning April 13th.   Paige was serenaded by a senior lady who did such an instant mood swing that the therapy staff was astonished. The lady had been sad and clingy all morning, but perked up, smiled and sang songs as soon as she started petting Paige! She was even singing to our trading card as Paige left.  Good job, Paige!

Kris and Andre Bring Smiles at OCMMC

Thursday, April 5th, 2012

From Caring Creatures’ Pet Therapy team Kris and her standard poodle, Andre:

At Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley, Andre and I entered a hospital room full of family.  The patient was in bed. The family was excited about a dog visit and the patient was willing.  The bed was high so I coaxed Andre to get on a chair next to the bed, that way the gentleman might pet his head.  He slowly moved his arm toward Andre. He tried a couple of times.  Soon he reached and scratched Andres’ head.   He moved his fingers and exclaimed “this is the first time I’ve been able to move my arm and fingers in twelve days!”  The family was on their feet!  Several members of the family grabbed their cameras and started taking pictures.  Then the man started exploring his other limbs he said “my toes move and my legs move!”  He was so excited that his arms went up like a football touchdown had been made.  He and his family were so excited.  We left the room with a joyous spirit.  The family was buzzing and we were smiling. I was so glad that Andre was able to bring some joy to this family. Oh the joys of pet therapy!

Teri and Monk – a very special visit

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Teri Kraslavsky and her beautiful Shepherd Monk have been doing pet therapy work for 8+years.  The following special visit was at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo in 2010.

Monk was working at the hospital with a man with an inoperable brain tumor.  The man was lying on a table in the gym and a therapist was helping him with stretching and strengthening exercises as he lay on his back.

Monk got up on the table and lay down, pressing his body against the man.  The man responded to the soft, warm, sturdy presence of Monk gently pressing against his body.  You could see the tension leave the man’s body, his face relaxed into a beatific smile.  Both of their breathing slowed.  Gradually stretching, the man’s range of motion increased, and increased, and then increased some more.  As he began to do his strengthening exercises, he inadvertently dug his elbow into Monk’s face.  Monk didn’t move, in fact, when I checked on him, I realized Monk was asleep.  More than their bodies were touching………Monk wrapped him in wordless, tender, accepting protectiveness.

All of us teared-up, myself, the man’s wife, the therapist….  Later, as I was driving home, it occurred to me that when we are at home, and Monk even THINKS I am going to step on his long fur, he cries-out and gets up and leaves the room, yet he was willing to let the man smoosh his face with his elbow.  Monk understands his therapy work is sacred.

The Best Thanksgiving

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

My thanksgiving in 2011 came on Tuesday (not Thursday) during a therapy dog visit to Kaiser in Irvine, CA with Mia. Family was in the room with mom in bed who doesn’t speak English. She lit up when I asked if I could bring the dog in, so Mia comfortably laid on the bed next to her.  The pulmonary nurse comes in to do a procedure and the mom’s face was struck with pain, she looked at the daughter and said (per translation) “can Mia stay with me?”.  We looked at the nurse and she said, no reason why not.  The mask went on, the vapors swirled around, the mom coughed and coughed and looked at her daughter in pain.  Then she looked down at Mia and started petting with both hands.  In about 5 minutes mom was asleep and the daughter had tears in her eyes of thanks.  She said that her mom dreads this procedure each time she has it and it was the first time she went to sleep during it.  Her arm was gently rested on Mia – Mia was asleep too.  We sat there chatting until the procedure was done and when the mask came off, I’ll never forget the look of thanks on that woman’s face.  It brought tears to my eyes.

Pam Becker & Mia