My therapy cat visit this week was a quiet one. On Mondays, the areas to visit are the Pediatrics wing, Skilled Nursing one floor up, and then over to Behavioral Medicine. And none of them had a lot of patients today.
There were only a couple of kids in Pediatrics, and I spent the most time with one teenaged girl. She was scared of me at first, and hesitant to touch me, like I might bite or scratch her. I ignored her fear and proceeded to lie next to her, purr, and make happy paws while my human explained how gentle I was. She also told her that purrs have healing qualities, because I was purring quite loudly for her! After a few minutes she relaxed and petted me, and that was really rewarding.
The next patient was a little boy who was playing with a plastic truck. I went over to him and let him pet me. His parents were there too, and they loved me. The first thing the mother said to the boy was, “She doesn’t look like our cat!” Their cat at home sounds really cool, because he lets the boy carry him around the way little boys do. He was nice and not rough with me.
When we went to Skilled Nursing, we expected to visit some patients in bed, but we wound up in the Activity Room the whole time! One patient was sketching on a drawing of a car, but he paused to pet me. I remained on the table and visited with the other patients too. One woman told me all about her cat at home, and then the nurses brought in an older Spanish speaking woman. Her face lit up when she saw me, and my human was able to tell her, “Se llama Summer,” when she asked what my name was. I liked being on the table to visit these patients. It made it easy for me to pose when my human took photos too.
By the time we finished in the Activity Room, we needed to head over to Behavioral Medicine. It’s in a completely different wing of the hospital and takes a while to get there. They only had two women for me to visit today, and I sat on a chair in the community room so they could pet me. One woman has a dog and four cats at home! I gave them both paw shakes. It makes my human happy when I do my tricks for the patients. It’s like they’re getting a little bonus from me.
Sometimes the simplest visits are the nicest.