Meet Kismet a Dentist’s Toothless Therapy Dog
Building a snowman is one of the most picturesque winter activities, which is why snowmen have become a wintertime cultural icon. A snowman appeared on the very first postcards, was the subject of some of the earliest photos, and even starred in silent movies. Frosty may be a happy snowman now, but his ancestors have a much more varied — and sometimes dark — history. The Middle Ages Snowmen were a phenomenon in the Middle Ages. They were constructed with deep thought and great skill because, during a time of limited means of expression, snow was a free art supply that literally fell from the sky. These artistic feats were popular winter attractions for well-to-do couples who wanted to get their fix of temporary art. Snowmen were often created by famous artists, including 19-year-old Michelangelo who, in 1494, was commissioned by the ruler of Florence to sculpt a snowman in his mansion’s courtyard. The Miracle of 1511 In Brussels in 1511, during six weeks of subzero temperatures called the Winter of Death, the city was miraculously adorned with hundreds of snowmen. The spectacle told stories on every street corner — some political and some demonstrating anger with the church, many too risque to speak of. For the people of Brussels, this Miracle of 1511 was a defining moment of artistic freedom. But when spring came and the snow thawed, Not all snowmen have an innocent history. In 1690, former Fort Schenectady in upstate New York was home to a remote Dutch settlement, which was under the constant threat of attack. Soldiers guarded the gates at all times because they were frozen open, but during a blizzard, they left a pair of snowmen to protect the gates while they sought shelter. That’s when 200 French Canadian soldiers and Native Americans approached. Naturally, they were unfazed by the snowmen and the Belgians were left with damaging floods. The Schenectady Massacre Not Just a Corn Cob Pipe and Button Nose The Surprising History of the Snowman
Therapy pets can have a powerful impact on dental patients, especially if those patients have anxiety. “The studies are very clear: People who sit and pet animals have lower blood pressure, and that’s what it’s all about,” Dr. Cameron Garrett told TODAY when the world found out about Kismet.
Garrett’s dental practice employs the adorable 13-year-old Chihuahua rescue as a therapy animal that patients can hold and pet while they get dental work done. Kismet’s life has not been easy. The Muttville Senior Dog Rescue has invested thousands of dollars into Kismet’s health — they diagnosed her with heart disease, removed a cancerous tumor, treated a hernia, and removed all of her teeth due to periodontal disease. Yet, Kismet remains a very sweet dog. She never barks and loves back scratches and being held. It’s especially amazing that the toothless Kismet found such a perfect new home with dental professionals! This past July, Cameron Garrett and his wife, Debra Garrett (a hygienist), adopted Kismet into their home as well as their dental practice. The serene dog has provided a special experience for patients who come for exams, cleanings, and even root canals. Of course, some patients are scared of dogs. In those cases, Kismet relaxes behind a closed gate. But over 98% of patients happily take Kismet on their laps while they undergo their dental procedure. Cameron Garrett told CNN, “Quite honestly, as a dentist, I’m as much a psychiatrist or psychologist as anything else. Kismet has allowed us to have another tool in our toolbox.” They can even use the toothless pup’s story to teach patients about the effects of periodontal disease. Getting love from patients also helps Kismet. “She just wants to be with us,” Debra Garrett explained. The new owners suspect that she was abused in the past and is still recovering from that trauma. “When she is on a patient’s lap, she’s providing them comfort, but she’s also getting comfort. It’s hard for me to describe how nice it is for me to be looking at her while I’m working. It’s just a win-win all the way around.” Our hearts are officially melted. It’s only fitting for a pet hero to have heroic owners, too!
ruthlessly invaded the settlement. Building a snowman seems like a simple and charming activity, but after learning about its surprising history, you might find those piles of snow seem a little more complicated and a lot more meaningful than before.
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