Today was visiting day. So We had to drive down to the Repatriation General Hospital. At times Rassilon can be quite playful, bouncing around and bowing and running around INSIDE. When we go to the hospital he is just the same UNTIL we enter the ward, then he transforms into the slower moving, gentle, caring dog that the patients (most of them) enjoy meeting and patting. This is something special about Rassilon as a therapy dog, but other dogs are different and people love to have visits from them, so if you want to have a therapy dog, go for it. The dog will learn about it’s surrounds. (In a school situation a more active dog would be great). Rassilon is perfect for nursing homes and hospitals.
It will be great in October when they move the 2 wards to Noarlunga Hospital, because we live, literally, a 5 minute drive away from Noarlunga hospital, and that was where I was working when I got Rassilon, so I know quite a few people there, and it will be great to let them meet the improved and socialised Rassilon. They only met the nervous new version when I first got him.
My mother is moving to Tasmania, so I won’t have to go and visit her at Seaford any more, so I will put my name down for more therapy visits, until Rassilon is ready to do the reading dog training. He has to have done therapy visits for 12 months before we can move on to the next stage.
Today Rassilon was at his talkative best. He was happy to announce his arrival and then to say goodbye. We impressed one woman who was scared of dogs and edged away when Rassilon went to the woman next to her. But I took one of Rassilons treats and held it in my lips and Rassi came and so delicately took it. Once she saw that Rassilon was not going to rip her apart, she relaxed a bit, but still didn’t pat him. Next visit maybe?
The really good thing is that when Rassilon barks now, none of the nurses take any notice any more. They have all met him and know him and love to have him visit. In fact, today Rassi had as many pats from nurses as he did from patients.
Unfortunately there were a lot of patients with (known) infections that we were not allowed to visit (for the dogs protection), and ward 5 was fairly empty, which is good.
On the way to the car I took Rassilon onto the lawn where he relieved the pressures of the day (he had a pee). But in typical male greyhound fashion, he struggled to cock his back leg, only managing to get his toes about 3/4 of an inch off the ground.