1. To give close medical care and attention to someone or an animal in an attempt to return them or it to full health. A noun or pronoun can be used between "nurse" and "along." The government nursed along the foreign spy so that he would be able to survive their torture techniques to extract information from him. The poor stray was nearly starved to death when we found her in the gutter, so we took her in and nursed her along until she was back to a healthy weight.
2. To give close care and attention to something, such as a business or project, to make sure it succeeds, remains operational, or does not fail. A noun or pronoun can be used between "nurse" and "along." The stimulus package has helped nurse along several of the massive corporations deemed "too big to fail," but it wasn't enough to prevent the closure of thousands of other small businesses. This game has been a passion project of mine, and I've been nursing it along for nearly 10 years now.
nurse someone (or an animal) along
to aid or encourage the well-being or return to health of someone or an animal. She nursed the old man along for a few years until he died. She nursed along the invalid. The vet nursed the horse along for the rest of the night. He nursed himself along with chicken noodle soup and hot baths until the virus ran its course.
nurse something along
Fig. to manage something with care and thrift. (See also nurse someone or an animal along.) The board of directors agreed to nurse the firm along for a while and then sell it. She nursed along the failing business until it was showing a profit.