Ella’s Story: Brent Truitt and Ella, a Labrador/Shepherd, Visit Seniors at Mountainside

For residents of the Mountainside Residential Care Center, part of Margaretville Hospital, 7-year-old Ella, a Labrador/Shepherd mix, has been a bright spot in their days. Brent Truitt, Ella’s owner and handler, has been paying visits to Mountainside since 2017, and even scheduled virtual visits during the pandemic when residents needed TLC most.

“They light up and smile whenever they see her,’’ said Brent. “When I started this five years ago, I had no idea how powerful these visits would be. When we returned after COVID, they cried they were so happy to see her.’’

In March, Ella reached a milestone, making 10,000 one-on-one visits with residents.