Currie is our first Golden, but I used to have a rescue before her and a shitzu growing up. She’s definitely stronger than the little dogs and I can’t pick her up so it is different! It’s a lot more about working together.
“Why did you decide to get a dog?”
My husband is a Canadian Armed Forces veteran and got medically released for PTSD in 2015. It was very difficult when he came back from his deployment in Afghanistan. He’s had a lot of ups and downs and lost many friends there - deaths, bombings, ambushes. He was very different when he came back home. He has tried a lot of therapies: he’s tried equine therapy with horses, he’s gone on retreats, tried new medicines, new therapies, he’s tried everything.
At the end, we’ve decided to get a dog because we thought it would be good to have some moral support for him at home.
Currie and him have really bonded. They stay home together during the day and she can help him around the house, such as doing some retrieval tasks. I know, when you see her out here you can feel like “no, definitely not this dog, she couldn’t!”, but although she is not a service dog, he has trained her to help with a few things. For example, retrieving his clothes or doing the laundry by taking things out of the washer.
Being in the military and getting diagnosed with PTSD gave him a very tough exterior, but getting Currie has brought out a very gentle side of him and with her, it seems like he can let his guard down, cuddling with her and talking to her. She helps him get in touch with his emotions.
My husband is very hypervigilant and therefore doesn’t go out, so when Currie is outside with me, it’s play time!
Helping Out Her Mom
I thought that getting a dog would be a big help for him, and it has been, but Currie has helped me a lot too. I was going through some intense pain and the doctors kept telling me it was normal. When they finally did an ultrasound, a tissue had grown all throughout the uterus and I was diagnosed with endometriosis. Before Currie came into our life, I was staying home a lot. I didn’t realize I was very depressed and anxious, dealing with a lot of chronic pain.
Ever since I got her, she’s been pushing me to get out more because my husband can’t and she has inspired me to do more, for her. I lost 20 lbs by walking her when I didn’t realize I wasn’t even healthy when we first got her. She’s shifted my focus away from the pain and now that I’m not depressed, we’re purging our house, we’re going out and just… getting back to real life.
Currie the Puppy
We got Currie when she was 8 weeks and it was like having a newborn. We live on the 17th floor of a condo, which made potty training difficult too, but we trained her with some fake grass on the balcony and she was very smart! She only had 3 accidents. It got easier overtime, but some days were very hard. She had days when she wouldn’t even sleep and stayed up all night, jumping on everything when my husband needed some peace and quiet. She caught on really quickly though and now when he’s there, she will just lay down and put her head on him. She’s a very sensitive dog who can sense emotions well. She will even go up to people on the street when they are upset because she knows.