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How Relating to my Dog Taught me About Myself

Updated: Mar 24, 2020

My Darling Lucy

This is my dog Lucy. She was given to us because her owners no longer wanted her. We’ve been told that she was a working dog and that she would collect the kills when they went hunting. Personally, I hate hunting. I believe it is not a “sport” it is murder for fun and how murder of an animal can be “fun” I will never understand. But hey-ho, I digress. Lucy is 9 years old and was usually caged and not allowed on furniture. I don’t believe for one minute Lucy was ill-treated but I do believe she was in the wrong environment for her. And how many of us can relate to that?

I have always loved dogs, always wanted one of my own but faced a number of blocks stopping me. Until Lucy entered our lives. I have been known to stop the car earlier to get a chance to interact with a gorgeous pup, cross the road for a chance of a stroke and go to local shelters to give them some human interaction and cuddles. It warms my heart. But Lucy, I see myself in Lucy. We are just trying to do our bests together.

I don’t think Lucy was walked, as in a traditional dog walk. I think she just got out when she was taken hunting. I think this because Lucy is terrified of the lead. It has to be hung up out of eyesight to stop her anxiety, we can only take it out at the last second before leaving the house. She shakes, she cries, she lowers her head and tucks her tail right in. I’d be lying if I said going outside didn’t make me feel the same way sometimes. We both look at each other and I say “I know this is scary, but we’ll feel better once we’re out” and you know what? We usually do! Without her I wouldn’t have the strength to leave the house and without me Lucy wouldn’t leave the house.

Lucy gives me someone to talk to when I feel like its all too much, she’ll let me hold her and stroke her until I feel calmer. When Lucy is a bit restless and maybe a noise or something has peaked her anxiety, we cuddle into what I’ve named “the safety cocoon”. Sitting cuddled up under a blanket, safe from the worlds dangers.

This is our next goal. Working together to help other people who feel just like us. Myself and Lucy have a long way to go, but together we’ve already came so far. We want to come out and spread a little joy for people who may have lost theirs. I’ll keep this blog updated on our adventures into Pets as Therapy. But in the meantime, we’re just trying to keep each other plodding along.

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