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Monday, February 6, 2012

Dogs visiting hospitals and care centers?

I know some people like to bring their therapy dogs to visit people in hospitals or care centers, but what if you have allergies and asthma? This weekend, we were visiting Family Members in a care center and a family member proudly brought their Show Dog. (And it's a BIG dog)

I was shocked and suprised, because I turned around and there it was. In fact, it scared me because I wasn't expecting to see a pet in a care facility. The problem is that we are allergic to dogs, as is the family member we were visiting. However the other family members felt that they were doing a service by bringing in their show dog to let all of the other residents see her. Granted, it seemed to work. There were several residents rolling along in their wheelchairs whose faces really lit up when they saw the dog. And it's rather amusing watching grown adults talking baby talk to a dog!

I guess it seems a little boring there day after day, seeing the same faces of nurses and fellow patients and not having a lot of excitement. So the Show Dog really seemed to make their day.

However, for me, Hubby, and Family Member we were visiting, we were miserable. My nose stuffed up and mucus filled my nose and ran down my throat the whole time Show Dog was there. It was pretty gross. Family Member asked them not to get Show Dog near her, as she had an asthma attack the day before and her chest was still tight. But the other family members seemed not to notice.

So, what to do? As we were leaving the care facility, another visitor was bringing in TWO dogs to visit a family member. (At least these dogs were little) I guess these people think they're brightening their family member's day, by bringing the dogs in to visit. But if we are going to have allergies and a potential asthma attack, what should we do? They know we are allergic and would rather not have the dog around, but they bring Show Dog anyway.

Anyone else had a similar sticky situation to deal with?

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Andrea:

    I'm a writer with a big environmental group—the Natural Resources Defense Council ( We're trying to reach out to and interview parents of kids whose asthma is triggered or made worse by bad air quality. We'll use these interviews in blog posts by our experts, op-eds, speeches, talking points, etc, all part of our effort to protect the country's lifesaving clean-air laws.

    Might there be some way you can help us to reach out to parents like these?


    Liz Galst