We all know animals have special healing powers.
They are often brought in during times of trauma. They tour nursing homes to give the elderly a friend to cuddle. They are even whisked into hospitals to help cure the spirits, at least, of the sick.
For one dog named Axel, a recent visit to a pair of patients in Canada is particularly meaningful.
The calming pooch spent time with Ryan Straschnitzki and Graysen Cameron in hospital in Calgary, Alberta. Both are Humboldt Broncos hockey players who were injured in last month’s devastating team bus crash in neighbouring Saskatchewan, which killed 16 people.
Straschnitzki and Cameron just moved from hospital in Saskatoon to be closer to home to recover.
Thank you @skcac @sarahmacd2 @austinsaral for taking #Axel over for some visits.@Gcams9 @rstraz_ #humboldtstrong #StayStrong pic.twitter.com/EB3MSwlTX1
— Sheldon Kennedy (@ShelKenn) May 4, 2018
Axel is a facility dog based at the Sheldon Kennedy Child Advocacy Centre based in Calgary, Alberta.
The centre is named after Sheldon Kennedy, the former NHL player who was abused by a former coach when he was a junior hockey player. Kennedy also survived a bus crash while on the road with the Swift Current Broncos in 1986. Four teammates, however, were killed.
Kennedy knows first hand what the survivors are going through.
Support for teammates and families paramount following Humboldt Broncos tragedy: Sheldon Kennedy https://t.co/aPWeizRhQZ #yyc #sk #humboldtbroncos
— CTV Calgary (@CTVCalgary) April 7, 2018
He has also visited some of the 13 left injured in hospital.
Great Seeing you @Gcams9
Your an inspiration…#HumboldtStrong @NHLFlames pic.twitter.com/LVQg8XJhvi
— Sheldon Kennedy (@ShelKenn) April 23, 2018
@ShelKenn Sheldon Kennedy and Brad Treliving came by to visit with gifts and Sheldon’s book “Why I Didnt Say Anything” for Ryan and teammate. Thanks guys. Great Time pic.twitter.com/POSpBWf73i
— Strazsr (@strazsr) April 23, 2018
The support from both two and four-legged friends has been incredible.
This is Payton. She’s a good Doggo. @Gcams9 #HumboldtStrong #therapydog pic.twitter.com/MrcHIVoPvZ
— Ty Cameron (@TJCams) April 17, 2018
The notes, the flowers, and the continued outpouring of love and support means so much. We see you, we love you, we thank you. #humboldtstrong pic.twitter.com/mY3wTVtNxF
— Humboldt Broncos (@HumboldtBroncos) May 1, 2018
Dogs indeed do have wings.
Thank you both for allowing Axel to have a wonderful visit. @sarahmacd2 @DogswithWings @skcac #humboltstrong #childadvocacy https://t.co/LmC2xTqwJ2
— Carrie Sanders (@CarrieS124) May 4, 2018
Axel is so beautiful!! 🤗 All the pups are more than welcome to come back anytime!
— Michelle Straz (@MichelleStraz) May 4, 2018
Photo Sheldon Kennedy/Twitter