Whenever possible, my human and I like to make therapy cat visits to hospitals on holidays. But when we looked at Thanksgiving a while back, the slots for our regular Thursday hospital were already filled. So we had to settle for Thanksgiving week. We chose Monday because that’s when they schedule the therapy pets to visit Behavioral Medicine.
But before going over there, we spent an hour visiting our regular wings, Pediatrics and Skilled Nursing. Only one patient was in pediatrics for us to visit (two were in isolation, so we couldn’t see them). It was a young girl who was recovering from a very bad episode of food poisoning, and she was delighted to see me.
I got to hang out and snuggle on the bed with her while she petted me. During the visit, a doctor stopped by with a crowd of students and residents, and he explained what was going on with her, and all the girl’s measurements and stats related to her illness. That’s how we knew what was going on with her. The funny thing is the girl wanted to know if I was scared because I was shaking — I was actually purring! She had never felt a cat purr before, and my human had to explain that it meant I was comfortable and happy being there with her. I don’t think about it much, but we kitties really are different from dogs, and we offer a different healing energy than what the dogs do.
We didn’t do any bed visits in Skilled Nursing. Instead we went to the activity room, where patients in wheelchairs were sitting at a table, doing crafts. I sat on the table near a guy who was mixing paint. My human made sure I sat still so I didn’t get in the way or knock things over. A couple of the women wanted photos with me on their laps. I’m not really a lap kitty — I’m way more of a bed kitty! — but I did my best to stay for photos. By the time we finished there, we needed to go to Behavioral Medicine.
Our Behavioral Medicine visits happen in an activity room. We wait there until the staff brings in the patients. This time there were two men and a woman. I sat on a towel in a chair while the patients told us stories about the cats in their lives. I got petted a lot.
On the way back to sign out, I walked most of the way on my leash. People are always amazed by that and I get a lot of attention… which I enjoy. It was a nice visit, even if it wasn’t on the holiday.