While some dogs prefer being the only dog in a household so that they can have the sole attention of their owners, other dogs love having lots of canine company in their home. Jake, a Golden Retriever, is the perfect example of the latter as he loves the company of other dogs. I Heart Dogs tells how Jake loved the company of his older sister Molly, also a Golden Retriever. He had been with her since he was a puppy. Sadly, Molly passes away and Jake was completely heartbroken.
Jake’s parents knew that he was struggling with being on his own, so they decided to get another dog to keep him company. This led to them getting a young Golden Retriever called Addie. Although they originally got Addie to keep Jake company, she ended up helping Jake in ways that nobody had expected. As the older dog of the two, Jake taught Addie lots of things as she was growing up. The two of them developed a strong and special bond as they spent all their time together. The pair were happy in each other’s company and were very playful with each other.
Unfortunately, all the playfulness ended when their owners noticed that something was very wrong with Jake’s eyes. Their parents, the Atkinsons, began to notice that Jake was having some problems with his eyes, but at least he had the support of Addie as she would often lick his eyes to make him feel better. The Atkinsons repeatedly took Jake to the vet in the hope of getting a diagnosis and finding a cure for the problem. Jake had a condition called dry eye, which is a painful condition where the eyes stop producing tears, says the PDSA. In some cases, this is an easily treatable condition, but if the medication does not work, it is extremely serious.
Although the vets tried several different treatments, Jake showed no improvement. In fact, his condition was getting worse. Due to the severity of this issue, the vet gave them the devastating news that Jake would lose his eyes. If the vet didn’t remove Jake’s eyes, he would suffer extreme pain and the only other option was to have Jake euthanized. Removing Jake’s eyes seemed such an extreme measure that the Atkinsons were reluctant at first. However, the alternative was unbearable, and they only wanted the best for their beloved dog. Before making their final decision, they spoke to other dog parents who had gone through a similar experience. After this, they felt more comfortable about the procedure.
Jake was only two years old when he underwent the surgery. Despite the severity of the situation, he remained the happy dog that he had always been and showed immense bravery as he adapted to his new situation. One thing that helped him through this difficult period of his life was having his sister Addie by his side. Jake needed time to readjust to his surroundings as he couldn’t see, and Addie never left his side during this period of readjustment. It was as though she knew her brother needed her help and that she wanted to repay him for all the things he had taught her.
Their mom, Kim Atkinson, says that Addie always remained close to Jake for a long time after his surgery. While he was learning to map out the house and identify where everything was, Addie always walked alongside him as though she was guiding him through the process.
The Atkinsons also tried to help Jake out while he was readjusting, but he showed little interest in having them offer him their help. One thing with which they tried to help him was learning how to maneuver up and down the stairs. Jake shunned their assistance and it seemed that he wouldn’t learn how to get between the floors. Addie then took a turn at showing him how to do it, and Jake could suddenly climb up and down the stairs with no trouble.
Jake can always smell and hear when Addie is around, so he can learn from her by following him around. Not the two of them have become inseparable, and Addie has helped Jake to return to his former playful self. Their dad, Joe Atkinson, has said that people often describe Addie as having superpowers. However, he believes that the truth is much simpler, and it is just that they have a strong bond and are there for each other. He thinks that Jake having Addie by his side has clearly made a difference to how well he has coped with his situation.
There are plenty of stories about how dogs have made humans happier and benefited their life in some way. They can help people cope with grief, stress, and loneliness, and even benefit a human’s physical health in many ways, says The Huffington Post. Therefore, it is little wonder that these benefits have been recognized and dogs are widely used as therapy or emotional support dogs so that wide groups of people can enjoy these benefits.
Jake’s story shows that dogs can also offer benefits to each other, as well as to humans. This is something that is talked about less. Not only do Jake and his sister offer each other companionship and a strong bond, but they have also been there for each other in their time of need. Without the support of Addie, the story of Jake’s recovery and how he has adapted to life without eyes would be very different. He may not have found readjusting quite so easy. As both dogs are still young, they have many years together ahead of them. It is likely that Jake will continue needing the support of Addie throughout his life. In return, he can offer her his companionship and they will enjoy many more play-filled years in each other’s company.