Tuxedo Cat Brings Smiles And Hope To Critically Ill Patients

Duke Ellington Morris the cat, named after jazz legend Duke Ellingto, is an important member at the UCSF Medical Center, bringing smiles and hope to critically ill patients.

Duke is from the San Francisco SPCA and he brings furry snuggles and joy to critically ill patients from the intensive care unit! He is often seen sitting on a cart as he is wheeled around to greet patients.

“Our therapy cat, ‘Duke Ellington’ Morris, brings furry snuggles and joy to critically ill patients in our intensive care unit!” UCSF Medical Center said.

“Our staff thinks he’s pretty “purr”-fect too.”

When he is rolled down the hallway, he is happy to greet doctors and staff, getting pets and kisses! Everyone loves him!

“Duke is part of our local SPCA’s animal-assisted therapy program.” Shelter animals visit critically ill patients to help them cope with anxiety, pain, depression.

Before each visit all patients are screened for allergies. “Our staff screens for allergies before the cat visits, as well as taking precautions with hygiene etc. In addition, the SPCA’s animal-assisted therapy program has specific grooming guidelines.”

An cute video of patients petting Duke was shared on the hospital’s Facebook page and has been viewed more than nine million times.