Blind Dog With Severe Anxiety Had No Idea He Would Meet Just The Right People

19/9/2017

Poor Oreo has had a tough couple of years.His elderly owner and best friend for many years was forced to give him up after becoming terminally ill, reports The Dodo. Not long after, he was diagnosed with glaucoma, a disease that gave him painful cataracts and eventually forced veterinarians to remove both his eyes.

Source: Matt Dowdy

Luckily, he found a brand new family. Matt Dowdy and Stephanie Cinoca, who adopted Oreo as a companion for their dog, Doc Holiday, were well up for the challenge:

We’ve had experience owning dogs with special needs and have no children, so we were ready to accept the challenge of caring for a blind dog. 

However, it became very clear after only a few short weeks that the usually playful pooch was having some issues. They set up a camera to record what Doc and Oreo were doing when they went to work every day. What they saw, as they told The Dodo, was worrying:

We saw that Oreo began panting, pacing and barking from the minute we left until we got home.

Oreo was diagnosed with separation anxiety, an anxiety disorder that can make both people and dogs worry horribly or even panic when people they love and trust aren't nearby.

Source: Matt Dowdy

To help Oreo with his condition, the couple took him to veterinarian Dr. Jill Sackman, who gave him anti-anxiety medication. She also worked with them to come up with a course of 'therapy' that would help lessen the poor pup's nerves.Dowdy and Cinoca started to leave the house, just for a little bit of time at the beginning, but for longer and longer the more comfortable Oreo became:

We began doing practice leaves — starting with five minutes. We would watch the camera and come back inside if Oreo stopped barking for a minute. We gradually built our way up to four to five hours over the course of six months.

Slowly, over time, Oreo learned to trust again. He no longer thought that he would be abandoned every time his humans left the house.

Source: Matt Dowdy

His new brother, Doc, was also a great help. Having to learn how to live without his eyes was very hard, but Doc was there to help him, every step of the way. Apparently, nowadays they like to nap together when they're alone in the house, snuggling up on Dowdy and Cinoca's bed.

Source: Matt Dowdy

Although having a dog with such severe anxiety has been a struggle, the couple have no regrets:

We loved him so much right away. We just decided that we would do what we had to because we don’t believe in giving up on animals.

If you think that your dog has anxiety problems, please contact your veterinarian, who will be able to advise you on the best way to help your pet.

H/t: The Dodo

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