Dogged de­vo­tion

Ther­apy dog Ruby is help­ing brighten the days of pa­tients at Os­borne Park Hospi­tal.

Stirling Times - - News -

AS soon as Ruby trots into Os­borne Park Hospi­tal’s re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion ward, pa­tients’ faces light up.

The five-year-old dog started vis­it­ing the Stir­ling hospi­tal in May as part of its trial pa­tient ac­tiv­ity pro­gram.

Owner Emma Duffy takes Ruby along to ward 4 for a few hours on Sun­days to spend time with pa­tients, many of whom have been in hospi­tal for weeks and months.

“A lot of them miss their fam­i­lies and miss their pets,” she said.

“Some peo­ple give her big bear hugs and just bawl their eyes out.”

Ms Duffy vol­un­teers with Delta Ther­apy Dogs, which con­nected her and Ruby with the hospi­tal.

She said Ruby was ideal for the role be­cause she was “su­per chill” and en­joyed the at­ten­tion.

“Any dog can be a ther­apy dog, it’s just a tem­per­a­ment thing,” she said.

“She loves it, peo­ple love it.”

Cor­po­rate nurse man­ager Sharon Burke be­lieved the ben­e­fits were ev­i­dent, es­pe­cially for pa­tients who were more with­drawn.

“The dog comes in and bang, you see the change. It’s amaz­ing,” she said.

“Peo­ple are just gush­ing and say it’s bright­en­ing their day.”

Pa­tient Ju­dith Pa­trick, of Mt Law­ley, said it was fan­tas­tic to be able to pet Ruby.

“We all have love in our hearts,” she said.

Pic­ture: Mar­tin Ken­nealey www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d488857

Emma Duffy from Delta Ther­apy Dogs and Ruby meet Ju­dith Pa­trick.

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