Touching Moment JJ the Hopsice Therapy Dog Comforted a Dying Woman With No Family

Touching Moment JJ the Hopsice Therapy Dog Comforted a Dying Woman With No Family JJ the therapy dog nuzzles a patient. (Tracy Calhoun)

This is the heartwarming moment a therapy dog comforted a dying woman as they listened to poetry together.

The dog, named JJ, can be seen nuzzling and putting her paw on the woman in her hospice bed.

The video was taken by JJ's owner Tracy Calhoun, a registered nurse who works at Samaritan Evergreen Hospice in Albany, Oregon with the dog.

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Speaking to INSIDE EDITION, Calhoun said that the patient - whom she does not identify in the video - had no family, husband or children.

"When we have people who are alone and they don’t have anybody, we’ll go in and stay at their bedside," she said. "JJ kept nudging her hand so I put her up for 30 minutes. She put her paw up but she doesn’t do that with everybody."


I often do bed visits, though never without The Bossy One. This is a lady who has very few people to visit her. She cannot see and often does not wake up, but she did like having her hand on my fur. She was very calm during my visit. We were listening to Yeats, by the way. I was very insistent to have her touch me, more so than usual. We fell asleep later with her hand splayed on my head, both of us snoring (but no proof of that!) I sure can be silly at times, but I also know when to be quiet and present. Her caregivers were very appreciative when they saw this video.

Posted by JJ, Hospice Therapy Dog on Sunday, 23 February 2014

The woman can be seen raising her hand to touch JJ.

"She had not been responded to us. That was the first time she reacted," Calhoun said.

The woman passed away the next day.

Calhoun said that watching the tender moment gave her "goosebumps." It was an example of JJ knowing that someone needed her, she said.

"She's very intuitive," she said. "I’ve never had a dog quite as in tune as she is. But I didn’t teach her how to be like that, she just knows."

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And the five-year-old pup, who has been a registered therapy dog since she was a year old, doesn't just give support to the patients - she's there for families, too.

"She spends time with whoever needs it," Calhoun said. "It’s a nice distraction. They laugh with her and it’s relief. It’s a good memory of a sad time."

You can find out more about JJ and her work on her Facebook page.

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