Over the past few months, Audrie Spake’s father, João, has been battling a number of health issues that have kept him bedridden. But while his doctors have been doing all they can to help his body recover, Joao also recently had a visitor to help repair his heart.

That visitor’s name is Paçoca.

Paçoca is a therapy horse who works with volunteers at Coletivo Inclusão, a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide outreach to people with special needs. What a difference it can make.

Earlier this week, Spark shared a touching video showing Pasoka visiting her father. Seeming to sense the type of interaction Joao needs most, Pasoka leans gently against his chest, quietly exchanging comfort and love.

“He and my dad have always been like this,” Spike wrote. “It used to be beautiful!”

Clearly, this is a visit that Joao won’t soon forget. And, with any luck, it does more than just retain a memory.

Today, more and more medical professionals are recognizing the therapeutic benefits of treating animals to the health and well-being of their patients.

“Animal-assisted therapy can significantly reduce pain, anxiety, depression and fatigue in people with a range of health problems,” the Mayo Clinic reports. “It’s not just people with health problems that benefit. Family and friends who attended the animal visits said they also felt better. “

Joao’s daughter seemed to agree with Pasoka’s visit: “It was an inexplicable moment.”

Sometimes making others happy is the quickest way to happiness!