Having visited a hospital for around two years, Chance has met a number of patients who can’t speak for one reason or another. Chance does not miss a beat. He will say hello to anyone whether they say it back or not. There was one patient who loved dogs, but had a tube down their throat.
They were excited when we came in and sat up to looked at him. This was not a wise move for them. So they could lay down, I picked Chance up and put him in bed with them. They were so happy, you could see them smile. You could also see them trying to mouth the words “Good Boy.” I told them that Chance just loves pets and did not need anything more. I saw the relief when they realized they did not need to speak.
Recently we had a very sad visit; grief is painful to everyone around. Chance can feel this, I see it in his movements. He becomes very calm, very slow, and very deliberate with all his motions. When the time is right, he goes to work. He sometimes reads the situation better than I can. He knows when to introduce himself, who to start with, and even how long to stay. Chance always lightens the mood, even in these grief stricken situations.
He does this all without saying a single word.
An Aside: There have also been patients who have not been able to pet him, and he rocks with them as well.