"Ah, Oscar," she smiles, and with a nod, almost as if she were expecting him, allows him to pass into the room where a frail elderly lady, her body ravaged by cancer, is sleeping fitfully. Oscar sniffs ostentatiously around, resists the blandishments of the relatives gathered round the bedside, struts out and continues on his round. For the lady in room 310, the time has not yet come.
Yet his skills of divination are beyond question - and have even been the subject of an article in as august a publication as the New England Journal Of Medicine. To date he has predicted the deaths of 25 patients, and done so with such accuracy that he has completely won the trust of even the initially incredulous medical staff.
"This cat really seems to know when patients are about to die," says Dr David Dosa, a geriatrician at Rhode Island hospital who also attends patients at Steere House.
"We started to see something was happening about 18 months ago and at first I think we were all very sceptical. But it's not an unusual occurrence for patients to die here, so we've had plenty of opportunities to witness and observe the phenomenon."Read more about Oscar, The cat that can predict death