‘Dogtor of Love’ spreads joy to hospital workers

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Coliseum Medical Center has a new staff member helping doctors and nurses get through the pandemic.

Kiyyaa the therapy dog has been visiting healthcare workers every two weeks to spread joy during the COVID-19 pandemic.

His owner, Dr. Yomiyyu Gammada says he always wanted to bring his dog to work, but now the pandemic has given him a reason.

“I always wondered, what if I could bring my dog?” Gammada said. “So I reached out to the director of patient experience about it in advance and she already did a lot of the paperwork on it, and before we knew it he was a certified therapy dog and he was coming to visit patients and staff members.”

Kiyyaa makes his way to each hospital floor when he visits. Registered Nurse Carlie Ford says she enjoys getting to pet the dog at work.

“I’d never pass up love and hugs, and cuddles, especially from a dog,” Ford said. “It just makes my day that much better.”

Kiyyaa quarantines after each visit to the hospital to make sure he does not spread COVID-19.

“Could he be an asymptomatic carrier and pass on the virus to staff or patients?” Gammada asked. “So as a result of that I just keep him for about 10 days at home after each visit.”

Although Kiyyaa spends a short time with each staff member, Gammada says it makes him happy to see the impact man’s best friend can make.

“I think he just provides them some comfort knowing that they are truly appreciated for all they do.”

The “Dogtor of Love” will continue visiting hospital staff throughout the pandemic. Dr. Gammada says he hopes Kiyyaa can start visiting patients again soon as well.

Categories: Bibb County, Featured, Health, Local News

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