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 Gone A-Visitin'

This past weekend, we took Morris a-visitiní. An elderly friend, Mora, had recently returned home from the rehabilitation facility where she had been recuperating from a fall. Her daughter lives down the road and is the primary caregiver, but works most weekends. Thatís when Moraís depression hits her the hardest. For Mora to be so depressed was truly troubling for the family, since she was, by nature, always lively, bright and the center of attention. Just ask her about her dates with Cary Grant or Tyrone Power. Mora and her daughter are true dog lovers and always swoon over the pictures of Morris (see below) that they have seen. So we thought that a visit with Morris would be just the thing to cheer her up.

My friend Dr. Bill Thomas has proven how much pets help people living in long-term care facilities through his Eden Alternatives program, but I wanted to see if a home visit would do the trick as well. Boy, did it! Mora was up and out of her chair as soon as she saw Morris and her demeanor changed to that of her bubbly youth. When her daughMorrister stopped by, it was a real love-fest among the three of them. In fact, they asked if there wasnít some long overdue chore we needed to attend to so they could spend some quality babysitting time with him. For his part, Morris seemed to strive to please Mora, from extensive licking to sitting on her lap, shamelessly seeking scratches which Mora cheerfully administered. When we finally had to leave, there were pleas for more time from all involved. I guess it is no surprise how important the unconditional love of a pet is to anyone, most especially those who are depressed, but it was amazing to see how fast this application of canine medication took effect.

By the way, I have joined the Twitter generationÖI hope this does not make me more of a twit than usual. If you Twitter too, please join us for some tweets from the road. (Ok, now Iím really getting ill.)

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Gary Barg

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