Hospital throws party for ‘hero’ dog who comforted staff during pandemic


This dog got a send-off fit for a hero.

Future service dog Wynn spent the last year comforting the emergency room staff at Rose Medical Center in Denver during the worst of the coronavirus pandemic. 

On Thursday, before Wynn had to leave to complete her service dog training, the staff at Rose Medical threw a party to show their gratitude and tell Wynn how much they’ll miss her. 

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“Wynn, our beloved service dog in-training, is ready to begin her next chapter,” the medical center wrote on Facebook Friday. “Yesterday, we celebrated Wynn and reflected on all the comfort she provided to our staff during the pandemic.”

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Dr. Susan Ryan, an emergency physician at the center, has been raising Wynn over the last two years through an organization called Canine Companions for Independence, according to KDVR. 

Ryan told the station that Wynn made a huge difference to the staff at Rose Medical during the most challenging moments of the pandemic.

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“We all witnessed a lot this year,” Ryan told KDVR. “We had incredible camaraderie. We were the best team I ever imagined being around, and she was part of our team — she saw us through.”

A future service dog was given a send-off party this week to celebrate how she supported emergency room staff during the most challenging times of the coronavirus pandemic over the last year. (iStock)

A future service dog was given a send-off party this week to celebrate how she supported emergency room staff during the most challenging times of the coronavirus pandemic over the last year. (iStock)

“People would just pet her and break out into a smile when it was just the hardest day,” she added.

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At her send-off party on Thursday, employees made signs and wrote notes to celebrate Wynn. According to KDVR, some people called her a hero.

“It’s a proud moment and it’s a sad moment,” Ryan told the station. “She taught me how to stay present in the worst year of our lives, and that’s a pretty big lesson.”

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During her advanced training, Canine Companions will decide what kind of service dog Wynn will go on to be, KDVR reported. That could be anything from becoming a facility dog in a courthouse or hospital, helping a child with special needs or comforting a veteran with PTSD, according to the station.

Wynn’s story went viral last March after Ryan posted a picture on social media of the two of them sitting on the floor in the ER, according to Canine Companions. 



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