Sometimes you have to bend the rules to make a difference. This was the case when one woman snuck a dog into a hospital disguised as a baby — and her ruse payed off big time. If anyone understands just how powerful the bond between pooch and human can be it's 21-year-old Shelby Hennick. The California-based veterinary technician works with animals everyday and even has a tattoo reading "You'll never walk alone" surrounded by paw prints. When Hennick's grandmother, Nona, was hospitalized due to a reaction to her medicine a few days ago, Hennick began brainstorming a way to cheer her up. It was Hennick's mom that first had the idea to somehow bring Nona's dog, Patsy, into the hospital for a visit, and Hennick quickly jumped into action.
She stopped by Nona's house to pick up the pupper, and before heading into the hospital, wrapped her up in a fuzzy blue blanket like a baby. Hennick's mission went flawlessly, she breezed past the hospital staff with a little wave and headed to Nona's room. Patsy, too, played her part brilliantly, showing great restraint in her hiding place. "Patsy was quiet the whole time and actually kept licking my arm," Hennick told BuzzFeed News. Her disguise was so ingenious that Hennick's grandma thought that she had brought her sister's baby to visit, notes BuzzFeed, and it wasn't until she set Patsy down on the bed and the fluffball crawled out from under the blanket, that Nona realized the great lengths taken to cheer her up.
Hennick posted photos of her heartwarming adventure on Twitter with the tagline "My grandma is in the hospital right now and wanted to see her dog. So I made it look like I was carrying a baby and we made it":
My grandma is in the hospital right now and wanted to see her dog. So I made it look like I was carrying a baby and we made it 😂❤ pic.twitter.com/oKxNBlJEEL— Shelbae (@HennickShelby) June 11, 2017
Nona first brought home Patsy 13 years ago, when the puppy was so small and frail she had to be fed from a bottle. When the blanket was lifted, it was quickly clear to Hennick, that it wasn't just her grandmother who was excited by the visit. "Patsy kept crying and couldn't get close enough," Hennick told BuzzFeed.
Hennick tweeted about her creative subterfuge on Sunday, June 11, and in just two days her adorable post has gone viral, racking up over 440,000 "likes" and nearly 100,000 retweets. People on the social media site are calling her a hero, and the best granddaughter in the world.
I love this so much omg. Before my papa passed, nothing made him happier or more vibrant than a visit from his pupper in the hospital☺️♥️♥️— Brittany (@legit_britt) June 13, 2017
Hennick's tale has even inspired a few others to come forward and post about the time they snuck pets into a hospital to visit a sick relative.
I love it! We snuck my grandmas dog in for her too! 😭😍🐶 pic.twitter.com/DsSMfLJXzR— D 🌻 (@ddanielleggee) June 12, 2017
Though most of the responses on Twitter have been supportive, a few commenters are pushing back with the fact that hospital regulations are there for a reason — namely, that bringing dogs into sensitive areas may compromised other patients' health due to risk of infection or allergies. However, since service animals are allowed in most hospitals, some nurses will even help sneak in a beloved pet in to raise a patient's spirit.
Thankfully, Nona's health improved quickly after the visit and she returned home to Patsy on Monday. Sometimes puppies really are the best medicine.