Therapy dog brings comfort, smiles to hospice

Providing comfort

Friday morning at the Hospice unit of the VA Medical Center in Salisbury, was somber.

Many of the patients there were in a state called "decline", where their last days are imminent.

So it would seem strange to go there looking for something good. But we did. And we found it with four paws and fur.

"She goes in and out of every room several times a day just to check on them," said Melanie Foster, referring to the specially trained therapy dog named "Semper Fi".

"Fi" for short is a rescue dog trained to deal with the delicate needs of veterans and provide comfort in a time where it may be hard to come by. She roams the halls throughout the day going in whatever room she's needed. Sometimes, she sits for long periods of time while veterans simply pet her head. Providing a sort of peace, only a dog can.

"They just know no matter what you're going through, what you're not going through, 'I'm here for you I love you.' And there's no conditions on it," said Melanie.

One veteran in particular has taken a particular liking to Fi, and she has grown quite fond of him.  Unfortunately, on Friday, James Landers was one of the patients in decline. He was too weak to talk, but invited us in to see just what a comfort Fi is to him.

There are no words to describe what beauty there can be in a simple touch. Check out the video story to see why Semper Fi earns the meaning of her name everyday. "Always Faithful" has never been more fitting.