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Ruby Memorial Hospital Therapy Dog Brings Smiles To Patients' Faces

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Many of us have heard the saying "a dog is a man's best friend." But you never know how true that statement is until you witness it first hand.

Ruby Memorial Hospital uses a therapy dog to make its patients' day.

"She started doing therapy dog when she was a year old. The reason she started was because I saw therapy dogs at the community hospital I was rotating at. It gave me some comfort. It relieved stress during my residency. It's something I wanted to do with my dog," said Dr. Brendan Curley, Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center.

Princess Danger is a bulldog.

A bulldog that staff said can light up a room with just her presence.

"Patients can just hug the dog. The dog can sometimes give them kisses. A lot of times they can express things that they are thinking that they can't tell their family members. They just want that comfort," Dr. Curley said.

A cancer patient spends a lot of time away from home for treatments.

"Even if they are not in the hospital, they are in the cancer center getting treatment or tests. A good part of their life may be spent among us," said Dr. Manish Monga, Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center.

Staff members said Princess Danger helps the patient feel a little more at home.

"It would just be a better day if you could just have them with you. That's what she kind of does for our patients. We just bring her to see them and it's kind of like a little piece of home with them," said Jessica Markley, Medical Social Worker.

Dr. Monga agrees.

"There's no better thing than a therapy dog to have to reduce the stress, make the stay and the visit of the patient better. Princess Danger does that," he said.

So what does it take to be a good therapy dog?

"Make a patient laugh, make a patient cry, or just improve their day. There's not one memory. It's a plethora of memories that she gives to me and she also gives to patients," Dr. Curley said.

To learn more about Princess Danger, visit her Facebook Page.