I was Sick and You [and Your Dog] Visited Me

Slate has an excerpt from a new book about a dog who is a hospice volunteer.

Was it smart, I found myself wondering, to bring along this dog, who’d spent most of the first four years of his life alone outdoors? But he looked all right, his ears and tail up, no signs of stress or anxiety. In fact, he seemed to be studying the room, looking carefully at me, at Jamie and Carol, seeking cues.

He cocked his head at me. “It’s OK, Iz,” I said. “Say hello.”

I’m somewhat familiar with dog therapy, and from what little I know, I believe it can be helpful in some cases. Some dogs seem to have a real sense of human sickness and suffering, and a unique way of keeping company. We had a cocker spaniel who seemed to have a bit of that ability.

If I were sick or dying, I think I would appreciate having a dog visit. But I’m a dog guy.

If you have a few minutes, take the time to read the entire excerpt. I’m looking forward to reading the book.

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