Don't Curse the Nurse!

Sharing support with stories & humor


on June 19, 2019

So, this is crazy, but when a patient last week came in with what  she described as an ’emotional support’ dog, I was a little jealous.

I’m familiar with guide dogs. There is an agency en route home from work that trains dogs for the physically impaired.  A neighbor has one.

I am a big  proponent of all of us, no matter what our lives hold for us, having emotional support. I also understand the exacerbation of stress and anxiety that occurs when entering a hospital, for any reason, for that matter. I would never underestimate PTSD and all the things that can trigger an event

It was my territory. My house.

I think that’s what it was.

This special family member came with all the necessary papers to be in the hospital.

I didn’t mind too much having to step over the dog to reach the IV dial and set the rate. I didn’t mind that the husband focused more on the dog than his wife in the stretcher.

My ego, my big giant ego minded that my care wasn’t enough to calm my patient’s nerves.


He was a cute dog.

12 responses to “Competition

  1. Susan Rossow says:

    I get it. Do you think that the patient felt comfort knowing that her dog only provides comfort and love? The dog doesn’t ask questions. She knows exactly what to expect from her dog. Maybe her dog has been with her through lots of difficult situations. Being a gig person I can relate. They sense when their person is scared. They give unconditional love. Maybe it was all of that and no reflection on your nursing care. I bet you that’s what it was!

  2. Susan Rossow says:

    One more thought- it is difficult to compete with s cuddly dog for comfort:-)

  3. Basil Rene says:

    No one can compete with a dog 😀

  4. Well, the dog would be entirely different to a human, even a very nice one. Dogs don’t try to offer verbal comfort they are just lovely and cuddly and that is comforting in a different way.

  5. Beth says:

    I usually miss when I try to make judgments on people and situations, but it seems to me that the dog might not be able to offset a negligent husband..

    • Susan says:

      Boy, you hit the nail on the head there!
      The husband even asked the surgeon, in front of everyone, when they could ‘resume relationships’ and he used a much more vulgar reference. 🤨

  6. As a hospice nurse, I want to have an emotional support dog with me 24/7.

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