As I've noted several times, our dog Tralfaz is a total rockstar. He has great coloring and lots of fuzz, and despite being a big guy he is still a puppy and exudes happiness and bonhomie. Mrs. Key has even suggested that he would make a great therapeutic visitation dog, going around to hospitals and old-folks' homes, spreading doggie cheer to those in gloomy circumstances.
I think he'd be great at it... eventually. After a lot more training and a good deal more maturing. Elderly Mr. Vogelscheuche, 102 years old and 101 pounds in his Depends, does not need a 100-pound dog jumping on him. Not if he wants to live to see 103.
Then again, Tralfaz may have some innate health benefits.
After fighting my way home from the city last night, through the traffic of approximately 18 billion people going to the Giants-Jets preseason game, I was shot. I slumped over the kitchen counter like the dead body in the opening act of an episode of a crime drama; the only thing missing was a six-foot assegai sticking out of my back.
Tralfaz came over and started licking and nibbling my hands as they dangled. Fine, I'm a chew toy. Then the giant puppy tongue slapped across my face like a three-inch paintbrush. I popped up like toast.
"Amazing revival powers!" said the Mrs., or words to that effect.
I thought that might be helpful at with the elderly.
Nurse: "We lost Mrs. Murgatroyd."
Doc: "Let Tralfaz have a shot."
Tralfaz: [Sniffs, leaps up on bed, licks face]
Mrs. Murgatroyd: "Hey! What the hell was that?"
Doc: "The slobber of life, m'am."
I know the dog would like it. People at that age are often incontinent, and farting is the best way to get this guy's attention. Did you do THAT? That's GREAT! I LOVE your work!
Anyhow, much better Tralfaz volunteers in the hospital or nursing home than with the fire department. He's eaten right through through the supposedly indestructible chew toys made of fire hose material. Mrs. Key says he'd turn all the fire hoses into lawn sprinklers. "Well, your house burned down but your grass will look great!" Good thing he's not a dalmatian.