Bear wagged his tail and nuzzled his way into many hearts across the Highlands and South Coast as a Paws Pet Therapy dog.
The Golden Retriever worked from 2012 to 2017 and was remembered for his love of pats and cuddles before he passed on July 9 at 14 years of age.
Bear and his owner Dawn Spicer from Wandanian were one of the first teams trained to visit aged care, retirement homes, hospitals, schools and libraries.
Mrs Spicer said Bear helped people who struggled with grief and made the darker moments a little brighter.
"He was very good at the palliative care unit at the David Berry Hospital," she said.
"There was a deceased patient from the hospital who Bear visited regularly.
"A relative asked if he could come in for one last visit after he passed.
"So Bear went in and rested his head on the gentleman's hand."
Mrs Spicer loved that her visits with Bear brightened everyone's days.
"It was such a surreal feeling to see a change in patients when they saw the dogs," she said.
"It was lovely to see someone smile for a short time.
"I think it made it easier for families that there was something else in the room to concentrate on."
The pair trained in Bowral and visited the Southern Highlands Cancer Centre and aged care centres before they ventured out to other facilities.
Bear became a regular at the RFBI Basin View Masonic Village, Shoalhaven Hospital Children's Ward, and Nowra Private Hospital.
"When we made visits to places, he was bouncy and jumpy," Mrs Spicer said.
"When he walked in, he had to put on his work clothes and was ready for work."
The beloved canine even got festive - he jingled down the hallways when he dressed up to spread some joy at Easter and Christmas.
He was also one of the first pooches to accompany young children learning to read in the Paws 'n' Tales program at Shoalhaven Library.
Some liked them at the bed's edge, whilst others wanted the canines to jump on the bed, which she admitted Bear did "many times".
"I kept apologising for the hair he left behind," she laughed.
"You knew he visited because even dark staff trousers were covered in hair."
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The owner said she has kept in touch with patients Bear visited.
"When I told them about Bear's passing, they sent their condolences," she said.
Residents can learn more information about volunteering here.
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