Flattery Wins The Prize

by Houndstooth on

This past Thursday was a nursing home visit night for us, and we decided to take Flattery and see how she’d do.  Mr. Taleteller armed his bait bag with treats, I packed the camera and our visiting bag and we headed off.  Bunny came along, as well, because we wanted Flattery to have a good role model for how to behave.

We planned on making it a short visit so that Flattery wouldn’t get overwhelmed.  I didn’t think she’d have a hard time, but we always try to end nursing home visits on a good note.  Even though it’s a positive experience, it’s still a lot to take in.  Flattery is still really young and curious about everything, so we also didn’t want her to wear Mr. Taleteller out with her antics.

Getting Ready to Visit

Getting Ready to Visit

As we walked in, we ran into a lady that we always see there with her mother in the front entry lobby.  They were having a chat and they were happy to see the girls come in.  We explained that it was Flattery’s first visit and they both fussed over her.  Flattery loved it.  Bunny spent some time with them and then moved to another lady who was there with her mom on the other side of the lobby.  The girls were both calm and feeling social, which I took as a good portent.

We decided to go straight to the Alzheimer’s wing, because they are usually the first ones in bed and there are a few ladies down there who especially love visiting with the dogs.  They made a big fuss over Bunny and Flattery both, along with the pair of Golden Retrievers who were visiting, Sydney and Scout.  We were telling them about Flattery being new in our house and how she’s really a puppy in a grown up body.  I was recounting a story about her stealing cheese wrappers out of the trash and things were going pretty well.

That’s when Flattery noticed something.  If you’ve visiting a nursing home, you might have noticed that often the walkers the seniors use to get around have tennis balls on the ends of the feet so that they have better traction.  Flattery has a particular attraction to tennis balls.  She is the most ball-driven Greyhound I’ve ever met.  This is secretly the reason why Mr. Taleteller adores her.  She saw the tennis ball attached to the walker (which, fortunately, was parked and not in use at the time) and could not resist further investigation.  I could see the wheels turning in her brain.  “Is that…what I THINK it is?”

Sure enough, she went for it, much to the delight and amusement of not only the senior residents, but the nurses as well.  One of them got up and went to a desk and returned with an extra tennis ball they had and let Flattery have it to play with.  Flattery was in heaven.   She entertained the crowd for a little while, alternating between playing with the tennis ball that had been loaned to her and trying to pry the one she’d spotted on the bottom of the walker.  After she had put on a show for a little while, we said our good-byes so that we could go up and visit some of the other residents in the other parts of the nursing home.  Flattery watched the ball being returned with the heartbroken look that only a puppy can conjure, but we assured her there was a tennis ball waiting for her at home.



We walked back up and Flattery earned quite a fan club.  Several ladies were all fussing over her while an older gentleman was loving on Bunny and whispering sweet nothings in her ear.  One lady hugged Flattery and she tucked her nose up along the woman’s neck and just ate the attention up.  I was really proud of how well she behaved with the people there.

She also had the opportunity to meet Winnie and Will, the Corgis who also visit.  I was a little worried about how she’d do.  She started by jumping up and down like a kangaroo or tiny bronco, but she settled down pretty quickly.  Mr. Taleteller held onto her and let her sniff noses with Will.  She began to realize that he was really a dog.  Winnie also came over to meet her.  Winnie and Will have both been around Greyhounds since an early age, so they were comfortable with her, and by the end of the meeting, she really wanted a chance to play with them, but I don’t think she wanted anything more than that.

Overall, Flattery seemed to feel that the nursing home is one of the most fascinating places on earth.  Everybody loved her, there were tennis balls in all kinds of crazy places and she got to meet some other dogs, too.  I couldn’t have asked for a better first visit for her.  And yes, she did get her tennis ball when we got home.

Attention From Random Strangers

Attention From Random Strangers

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29 Responses to "Flattery Wins The Prize"
  1. Crystal says:

    What a great first visit for her.

  2. Sue Dyer says:

    Way to go Flattery.

  3. rottrover says:

    What a gret outing!! In that first picture there’s something about Flattery’s eyes that remind me of Shyla. Maybe jut the puppy expression.

  4. Jolly well done Flattery!

  5. Human Rescues Dog says:

    wow, that’s great. Flattery is such a superstar and it’s hilarious what she did with the tennis ball attached to the walker 🙂

  6. Jen says:

    What a great girl Flattery is! And what a great role model Bunny is for her 😀

  7. Lori - What Remains Now says:

    I’m so glad that Flattery did well. That’s a funny story about the tennis balls. Funny the things you notice when you love them.

  8. Sara Blair says:

    What a fun visit! Bringing laughter & goofiness into a nursing home – best medicine ever!

  9. MelF says:

    Yay Flattery! It sounds like she may become a regular visitor to the nursing home. She is so pretty. I love that you take them there to meet people. Cupcake could never go, but if Daisy and Jasper weren’t afraid of strange new objects, like walkers and wheelchairs, they would be great there.

  10. Oz theTerrier says:

    Great job, Flattery!!! It sounds like you may be a “natural” at the nursing home!!!

  11. cookandgee says:

    It was great reading about Flattery and her first time at the nursing home. Flattery certainly had them laughing and as they say, laughter is the best medicine. I loved hearing about her obsession about the tennis balls. My dog Homer is that way about getting squeakers out of toys. 🙂

  12. Patty says:

    Glad she didn’t try to grab a tennis ball on a walker that was being used. LOL I wonder if she would be good at fly ball. Do greyhounds do fly ball? LOL

  13. Sounds like a fabulous visit! It also sounds like Flattery has found her calling as a therapy dog 🙂

  14. Emma says:

    That is the absolute cutest story! What human would even think about those tennis balls on the walker! As long as she didn’t race over and attack the walker causing the user to fall, it is wonderful! I guess she will do well as a therapy dog!

  15. Magda Guzdziol says:

    Awwwwww. I’m glad Flattery has a great visit and tennis-ball are my favourite too.

  16. catchatcaren says:

    It appears that “Flattery” WILL get you everything! 🙂

  17. SlimDoggy says:

    How great that she fit right in and provided such welcome entertainment. Good for her!

  18. Words With Wieners says:

    Awww, what a great story of Flattery’s first visit to the nursing home! It sounds like she did a fantastic job and made more than a few residents smile with her antics. I love that she nuzzled right up to the woman who hugged her. Guess this all means that she’s going to be a nursing home regular now.
    I can tell you… if I was in a nursing home, it would make my day… probably my week… to have sweet greyhounds come visit.

  19. Christine Sterling says:

    BOL – when Sam was a puppy my Dad had to use a walker for a bit. We put the tennis balls on it. One night Sam escaped from his enclosure and did a drive by of the walker, managing to not only steal the tennis ball, but the whole walker which my Dad happened to be using. We all had to dive to save my Dad. Sam was so proud of his stolen goods though!


  20. Angela George says:

    Way to go Flattery! I’m not surprised they all loved you though 😉

  21. Two French Bulldogs says:

    We would love to see the joy on the patients faces. Oh Flattery, good find, all those tennis balls
    Benny & Lily

  22. Jo says:

    Ba ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Oh! The idea of Flattery trying to grab that tennis ball makes me so happy inside. I love it.

  23. Dennis the Vizsla says:

    hello bunny and flattery its dennis the vizsla dog hay i am glad to heer that flattery did so wel on her first nersing home visit!!! and that she got a tennis bal afterwards after seeing the wuns on the wawkers like wot the old man had in the faymus dokyoomentary up!!! skwirrel!!!! ha ha ha but seeryusly dada sez that at the big drug store heer they akchooally sel speshul tennis bals wot ar speshally mayd to go on wawkers i do not no how he nos that perhaps he is gitting reddy for wen he needs wun after all he is gitting up their in yeerz!!! ha ha ok bye

  24. The tennis ball part was super funny – but overall, I am absolutely amazed that Flattery could already take the nursing home in stride. She is a winner! Honestly, I still don’t think that Shyla could handle a nursing home… too many scary things would spook her like walkers, carts, people looking at her, etc. But, every dog is different. I adore my girl but I think that Flattery is something special.

  25. Sue Muir says:

    Haha, what a funny girl she is 🙂 Nothing like a puppy to keep you on your toes and show you how to have fun!

  26. Casey the Boxer says:

    How cute!! I’m glad Flattery did so well.

  27. Jodi says:

    Way to go Flattery. It’s true, Flattery will get you everywhere. 😉

  28. Phoerauf says:

    What a great job! My husband’s black Lab who passed a couple of years ago once tried to steal the tennis ball from my husband’s grandmother’s walker while she was in motion! Luckily all was okay, no one fell

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