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Roy didn’t hear our knock. This wasn’t a surprise because his television was blearing through the closed door of his room in a retirement home in Richmond, Vermont. When we cracked open the door, Micro, who knew whom he was going to visit, rushed inside to find his good friend asleep in his wheelchair in front of a CNN broadcast. With excitement uncharacteristic of the little dog, Micro stood erect on his hind legs and barked his greeting as he gently tapped the man’s legs with his fore paws.
We watched with tears of delight as Micro’s “Uncle Roy” slowly woke and looked down upon his excited four-footed friend. With a joyful “Hi Micro”, he them gently eased the little dog up into his lap for a happy reunion. Hugs, pats, pictures, stories and articles were then shared and enjoyed.
Micro and Roy became acquainted several years ago at the assisted living facility where Lessie worked as the recreation therapist. Their fast friendship was such that Micro was the subject of much of Roy’s conversation. Perhaps Roy’s love for liverwurst, which he often shared with Micro, helped cement the closeness between them. Since our visit was to be a surprise, we brought liverwurst and crackers for Roy some of which he quickly fed to his little euphoric visitor.
Do dogs remember their friends? Absolutely. Do they cut though the boredom and routine of an elder in a retirement facility? Certainly. And without doubt, Roy will be telling people at the dinner table tonight about his visit from Micro just as Micro will always perk up his ears and cock his head when we mention “Uncle Roy”.