Therapeutic affects of man’s best friend

OreoThis is Oreo. He’s a cute mutt that came to us years ago when the dog of one of my wife’s coworkers had a litter and they needed homes for the lot. We took in Oreo (over my objections) and he’s been with us ever since.

You always hear about the positive affects pets have for their owners and I thought I’d add proof to that. I recently told the account of my experience with open heart surgery and Oreo played a big role in my recovery at home.When I first returned home from the hospital I was in pretty bad shape. I was very weak and felt like I’d been hit by a Mack truck, and I spent a lot of time over the next few weeks sitting in a leather club chair in our living room. This chair was the softest and most comfortable chair for me to sit in for extended periods of time. Besides the pain that any movement brought with it I was extremely cold all the time and couldn’t get warm no matter how I dressed nor how many blankets I piled on.

Oreo is a little dog, a mix between a Shih Tzu and a cockapoo. He’s a lovable little guy who has the run of the place and a personality as big as he is small. I didn’t know it at the time but Oreo had a rough time while I was in the hospital. He ate very little the week I was gone and got physically sick until I returned home. From the moment I walked slowly in the door he wouldn’t leave my side. He stayed with me every minute of the day and seemed like he was actually checking up on me constantly.

Like I said I spent a lot of time in the club chair. I gingerly sat down in it as soon as I got home and immediately Oreo jumped up on the chair, something he had never done before. He climbed up on the back of the chair and wrapped himself around my neck, like a little fur coat. This little dog spent over 12 hours a day keeping me warm and comforting me just when I needed it most.

My wife had to return to work as soon as I got out of the hospital and I was alone but little Oreo kept a wary eye on me. Many times I fell asleep in the chair and awakened when Oreo licked my face, as if to make sure I was just sleeping. When I went into the bathroom he waited outside the door until I came out. When I took a shower (something that was very difficult at first) he stood watch just outside the shower stall, watching intently until I got out.This little furry guy has a heart bigger than he is and I’m very grateful he was there for me. If anybody has any pet stories like Oreo’s I’d like to hear them.


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