A new therapy dog at Katherine Hospital has already made a difference to patient’s lives despite still undergoing training.
Izzy, a two-year-old poodle from Darwin PAWS, visited the hospital in October as part of her training, which is where she met 4-year-old Tess who was waiting for a cast to be put on.
Tess’s mother Amanda said her daughter had a broken elbow and needed a full arm cast, which involved putting it on at an angle.
Having had one before she said it was a traumatic experience where Tess had “screamed and screamed” but this time Izzy came to the rescue.
“Last time it was quite hard to get Tess to sit still but this time she was distracted with Izzy sitting at her feet,” Amanda said.
“She was petting her and all of a sudden her arm was in a new cast.”
“It was miraculous.”
Dubbed as “the white fluffy cloud” by Tess, mother Amanda said she was surprised at Izzy’s calming nature.
“She is the most healing-like dog I have seen, she is angelic,” she said.
Izzy, who is set to make a permanent move to the Hospital in the new year will be the first support and wellness dog in the Northern Territory to do so.
In addition to helping patients, she will also be a therapeutic presence for staff.
The initiative was made possible after $38,000 was raised at the Katherine Town Council’s Defence and Mayoral Ball in July 2022.