Previous posts in this discussion:
PostLittle Bit, the Canine Hero (Richard Hancock, USA, 04/05/17 4:03 am)
My wife Nancy took our dog to the veterinarian and heard the following: "This veterinarian started a program at the Lexington Correction Center, a medium-security men's prison south of Norman, Oklahoma, to involve the men in training and socializing abandoned or otherwise homeless dogs that would otherwise be unadoptable and would be put down. The program has been a great success for men and dogs alike, and one of the first graduates went to the Veterans' assisted-living facility in Norman.
"Little Bit was a great addition to the lives of these men and women, but after a number of years the veterinarian found that she had a bad and worsening heart condition. He told the men at the prison that he could keep her going for a year, but they needed to get another dog trained to replace her by then. As the year passed, she slowed down until one day she went through the entire veterans' home to the rooms of her favorite people, where she visited with them a while and then moved on. After she had completed her visits, she returned to her bed on the end of a couch in the living room, curled up, and died. When those veterans told the vet, who visited them often, about Little Bit's visits to say goodbye, they cried openly, as did he."
JE comments: A touching story of Man's (and Woman's) Best Friend. The veterinarian is to be congratulated as well for the prison dog training program. I had a new experience on the flight back from Mexico last month. A woman in the row behind me was holding a smallish dog, who wore the "livery" of an Emotional Support Animal. ESAs are not the same as service animals for the blind and physically handicapped; they (ESAs) are there simply to provide comfort. Officially registered ESAs have an advantage on flights, as they travel for free and are not subjected to the normal restrictions imposed on pets.
ESAs are not limited to dogs. Cats, ferrets, rodents, birds, fish and reptiles can qualify. ("Oh don't mind Mr Slithery--he's my Emotional Support Snake.")