Animals seem to have the natural ability to put smiles on our faces, even during more difficult times. Their presence alone can lift the most depressed spirit, creating a positive effect in everyone’s lives.
Doug Dawson, who works at a nursing home in Minnesota, decided to bring his adorable teacup poodle, Nala, to work one day. Shortly after arriving, Nala began to test out her own natural abilities -and boy, was Doug and his residents in for a surprise…
Doug has worked at St. Paul, Minnesota’s Lyngblomsten nursing home for years. Being the victim of many long hours, he thought it might be a good idea to bring his dog with him so she didn’t suffer from being alone too much.
Doug wasn’t exactly sure if it was a good idea to have Nala running around the halls of the nursing home without supervision, but he figured he’d try it once and see what happened. She was a friendly dog, after all.
Amazingly, the impact Nala had on the residents after only one shift was absolutely astounding. As soon as the pooch arrived, she took on a very special role—and it was something Doug never would have anticipated…
Nala never had a day of therapy training in her life. Despite this, as soon as she stepped inside the nursing home, she seemed to have an innate ability to bond with the elderly residents there.
At first, Doug was concerned that Nala would bother everyone, but it was the complete opposite. Her presence was such a joy to patients and staff alike that Nala started to make regular trips with Doug.
Doug would let her loose as soon as they arrived at work! Nala would wait patiently for the elevator doors to open, then leap inside to take her journey to the round of rooms.
As soon as the doors opened, away she went! Nala seemed to know the floor plan of the nursing home almost by heart. She’d peel off left or right as soon as she reached a new floor.
Even when she faced a waiting room that might lead to several different hallways, Nala had the right path memorized. It was almost as if she mentally crossed off each part of the nursing home after every visit. “Been there, off to the next!”
Sometimes, Nala would head into a specific room and run into new friends who also wanted her company. It wasn’t unusual for Nala to get dozens of kisses a day from the residents at Lyngblomsten!
Even the residents who had trouble moving on their own got to spend some quality with Nala. The teacup poodle made sure to stop and greet everyone she saw on her travels—and she enjoyed every second of it.
Unfortunately, many of the elderly men and women at Lyngblomsten either didn’t have regular visitors or their families lived hours away. Nala was able to add a little bit of cheer to their day—and it made all the difference in their lives.
Nala also had a very special sense about which of the residents were nearing the end of their lives. She would seek out the people who were especially ill, and lie on their bed, comforting them while they rested.
Even though Nala technically belonged to Doug, it was almost as if she considered everyone she came into contact with to be a part of her close family. In return, the loving residents of Lyngblomsten treated Nala like their own!
This friendly resident was always particularly joyous whenever Nala came her way. She and her husband used to own a schnauzer who looked very much like Nala. Every time the teacup poodle visited her, the smiling resident was reminded of her own beloved dog!
The woman even had a small ceramic statue of a schnauzer to remind her of the joys of having a dog. Her pooch played an important role in her life, and Nala seemed to have picked up where hers left off.
Doug was aware that Nala wasn’t like most dogs. She seemed to have a mind of her own when she worked, and all Doug could do was sit back and proudly watch her play a vital role in the lives of the residents.
Every nursing home employee that worked alongside Nala was stunned at the positive effect she had on the entire building. Her empathetic energy permeated through the halls and made everyone’s day easier…
In fact, the other employees at Lyngblomsten didn’t even really see Nala as an animal. She became such an important symbol of the nursing home that the rest of the employees even considered her part of the staff!
As long as Doug worked at Lyngblomsten, he would always bring Nala along with him. She gave the residents something to look forward to every day, and that was something no one could put a price tag on. Keep up the cheerful work, Nala!
Nala was truly one of a kind. Watch the entire news story below to learn more about the special gift this teacup poodle offered both the employees and residents of Lyngblomsten nursing home. Would your workplace benefit from a dog like Nala?
No one told Nala to do the right thing; she just sensed what was needed of her and took action. Thank goodness for this pooch—she really is an angel!
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