French Poodle Visits Owner in Arezzo Hospital Covid Ward

Whisky reunited with his owner


Owner and dog have been united after 10 days of separation thanks to a little ingenuity and the help of the owner’s family and doctors.  Carolina, an  80-year-old, was admitted to the San Donato Hospital in Arezzo at the beginning of the month with a severe case of Coronavirus. Her beloved six year old small white poodle, Whiskey, was allowed to visit Carolina in the Covid pneumology ward. The reunion was a moment of great happiness for both, Whiskey wagging his tail upon seeing his owner, and Carolina surprised to see her “fifth” child after days spent apart.

Carolina, who lives in Casentino, is a mother to four children (Silvia, Tina, Setilio, and Marco) as well as their two cats and parrot named Chicco. However, Whiskey is like her fifth child due to their strong bond. In fact, explains one of her children, if Carolina goes out to do some shopping, Whiskey will whine and cry and when she was admitted to the hospital he did not eat or sleep for the first three days.

Her daughters brought Whiskey to the hospital where doctors prepared a “protective suit” for him while Carolina wore a transparent mask. After she removed her mask, Whiskey sprinted towards her and planted a dozen kisses on her face. The poodle settled in at the end of Carolina’s bed, determined not to leave her again. Although Whiskey has since returned home, he looks forward to his next visit.

Carolina and Whiskey’s day together created an emotional atmosphere throughout the pneumology department. Psychologist Silvia Peruzzi admitted they all started crying when the woman and her dog embraced. Carolina’s eyes lit up, a moment of brightness after days of darkness. Although the daughters had sent images of her pets to Peruzzi to show Carolina, the emotional reunion of seeing Whiskey in person had a greater impact. 

While an animal visit may seem insignificant, there is research on pet therapy that supports the beneficial psychological and clinical advantages, according to the director of pulmonology Raffaele Scala. A visit from not just her family, but also her dog was a moment of relief for Carolina who us combatting to recover from the virus. Whiskey was the first dog to visit the San Donato hospital, but the success of his protective gear promises more safe visits in the future.  (elizabeth berry)