Essentia Health staff reunite patient with his service dog

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

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When Dennis Wold, 60, of Cloquet, found out he was going to have to stay at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Hospital-Superior for an extended period, he feared he would lose his new service dog, Warner, a black Labrador retriever.

“My son was caring for Warner while I was here, but he lives in the Twin Cities,” Dennis says. “So visits were sporadic, just here and there, maybe for an hour.”

Companies that train service dogs spend tens of thousands of dollars on that training, so Dennis thought Warner would be reassigned, because he believed he couldn’t care for the dog in the hospital, and the dog would not be working with Dennis as it was trained. Each day he was without his companion took a toll on Dennis’ health.

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