The dog days were over at Victoria General Hospital, even for only a few hours.
Victoria Humane Society staff arrived at the south entrance of the hospital in View Royal on Wednesday (Sept. 29) with a pen of eight puppies for healthcare workers to play and cuddle with, as a respite from weeks of heightened work.
“I’ve seen a large number of staff come through and just get this joyous feeling cuddling these dogs. It’s the relief that we needed,” said VGH clinical operations director Gillian Kozinka. “It’s a tremendous show of support from the community to provide this therapy during the day. I just have a huge thank you for Victoria Humane Society.”
By early afternoon, there was a line of at least half a dozen healthcare workers waiting to enter the already full puppy playpen.
“When I first walked up (with the puppies), people were saying things like, ‘Oh my God, this makes it all worthwhile,’ ‘Oh, this made my day,’” said society executive director Penny Stone. “It’s just nice to offer the healthcare workers who are putting up with so much right now. It’s nice that there’s something we could do to give back to the community that’s done so much for us.”
The eight shepherd-husky mixes are currently being fostered and will later be put up for adoption, Stone said. “Huskies like to wander and shepherds can be protective, so we want to make sure that the people who adopt them know what kind of breed they are and what they’re getting into. But they’re lovely puppies.”
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