As we get ready for a dog-filled Thanksgiving Day, I'd like to share an experience that Thelma and I had yesterday at The Baptist Home, an elderly care home near where we volunteer as a therapy dog team.
When we arrived, we headed towards one of the activity rooms where the residents congregate. Along the way we paused and greeted a new resident, whose family was just leaving their room. They didn't know that therapy dogs are pretty regular at the Baptist Home and were very eager for their father to meet Thelma since he is an avid dog lover. The resident was thrilled as were his children, a bright spot in his day. After petting and hanging out for a little bit, I told them that Thelma would be back in two weeks for our regular visit. One of his kids said they hoped it would be in two hours since this is the happiest they've seen him since his arrival.
Having visited my own grandmother for years at an elderly care facility years ago, I totally empathized with this family. I thought about Thelma's mission at this home, where she makes residents smile. I reflect on how valuable this work is not only for the residents but for their families who love them.
Thank you Thelma! and thank you Animal Farm Foundation for taking a chance on this special dog.