LONGVIEW, Wash. (KTVU) - KTVU's Frank Somerville posted about the special moment between a therapy dog and an ailing man.
Sherman's owner Sherry McAllister wrote:
"We were stuck in a huge traffic jam for about 15 minutes, without moving, when my phone rang. On the other end of the phone was a soft-spoken man who introduced himself as Andy.
He explained he was a few cars back from us, and saw Sherman stick his big ol' head out the window, so he called the number on our decal (we have a huge decal on three sides of the suburban with a picture of Sherman's head, his name, and our contact number).
He told us he had just returned home after a 3+ month stay in a nursing home recovering from back surgery.
It's because of this stay in the nursing home and his failing health that he had to re-home his large breed dog. He is, sadly, unable to care for him any longer.
This decision clearly broke his heart, as we could hear him choking up as he spoke.
He asked if we could meet up sometime, so he could just pet Sherman. Of course, we told him we would love to set a time to meet up with him. He thanked us and we said our goodbyes, with a promise to set something up in the next few days.
As we sat there in traffic, I couldn't get Andy's sad voice out of my head.
We decided to call him back and ask if he would like to turn off into the Wal-Mart parking lot to say, 'Hello' to Sherman real quick.
We could hear his voice cracking over the phone when he said, 'Yes!'. When we met him in the parking lot, he slowly got out of his vehicle, using a cane.
After proper introductions, we opened the side door of the suburban and told him he was welcome to sit inside the door, to visit with Sherman.
As soon as he sat down, Sherman came right over and started nuzzling into him. The tears started almost immediately... Andy sobbed into Sherman's neck. Sherman just sat there, letting him hug him, hold him, and kiss him.
It wasn't long before we were all pretty teary-eyed, as he told Sherman all about his dog he had to let go.
'You're a good boy, Sherman.'"
McAllister tells KTVU, "Sherman is a 229 lb 4-year-old English Mastiff who lives in Longview, Washington. He has been volunteering in the community through pet therapy since he was 4 months old. He spends most of his time with seniors in nursing homes, rehab/extended care, and assisted living facilities. He also spends time with the special needs community and visits grade schools each spring to talk with the little ones about dog safety. I truly believe his most important therapy work is with hospice patients anf their families. He just brings a calm, a sense of peace, to an otherwise stressful and heart breaking time in the family's life."