A nurse’s compassion: A unique connection between a pet and caregiver

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — A dog has a brand new home thanks to a Gwinnett County nurse who went above and beyond.

The dog’s owner was terminally ill so the nurse promised to take care of her dog after she passed.

Nurse Kim Still knows not everyone can adopt a patient’s dog, no matter how cute it is.

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Still she told Channel 2′s Matt Johnson that the lesson from this is that getting to know every patient can truly help them in more ways than one.

“I could have never guessed the connection that you develop with some people when you take care of them,” Still said.

Still got into nursing four years ago to help people, but never thought that a patient and her dog would end up helping her.

“They just totally changed my life,” Still said.

Still is a nurse at Northside Hospital Gwinnett, and said from the moment she was assigned to an elderly patient who was dying, the two of them connected.

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Something that weighed on the patient, though, was what would happen to her chihuahua, Jax.

“She didn’t have any kids. She didn’t have any family close by. So all she really had was this dog,” Still said.

Still says when the patient passed away, the family that flew in told her they surrendered the dog to a shelter.

“I was very worried that he was not going to be given a good chance, and possibly be put down if he didn’t get out of the shelter,” Still said.

So Still knew there was one more thing she could do for her patient and herself give Jax a new home.

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“I am never going to get rid of him. He is so sweet. He is one of the most loving dogs ever,” Still said.

Her co workers honored her with an award for extraordinary compassion.

Still says as long as Jax is in her life, he will remind her why she does what she does.

“People will need to feel heard, and they need to feel like someone cares about them,” Still said.

She says she already had one dog and didn’t think she would ever get a second, but now she says both dogs are best friends.

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