Friday, August 17, 2007

Dog appears to predict death at Ohio nursing home

Scamp is the live-in pet at an Ohio nursing home, but the Schnauzer doesn't just bring companionship to the lonely. He has an eerie gift that also allows him to bring comfort to the dying.

Scamp can somehow sense when the end is near for one of the old folks. He then waits loyally by their bedside in the final hours.

Scamp's owner, Deirdre Huth, is a staff member at the nursing home, The Pines, in Canton. Ohio. She says Scamp even tries to raise the alarm when he gets the feeling that one of the seniors is at death's door.


"He has either barked or he'll pace around the room. The only time he barks is when he's trying to tell us something's wrong," Huth said.

Yvette Notturno had a dear friend in the nursing home, and had heard stories about Scamp's gift. So when she got a call from a nurse that Scamp wouldn't leave her friends' bedside, she came right away knowing that her friend didn't have long,. Yvette's friend, Andrew Popa, died soon after.

Director of nursing Adeline Baker says Scamp has forecast practically every one of the 40 or so deaths that have occurred in the three years he's been at the home. She also insists Scamp's presence is welcomed by patients as the end draws near.

"It's not like he's a grim reaper," she said. "It's kind of comforting to know that maybe at the end of our lives, if we don't have family members, there will be somebody there to be with us."

There's a news video here.

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