Ever since he was a puppy, Jake loved being around other dogs. He and his older sister, Molly, were both Golden Retrievers and he always looked up to her. So, when Molly passed away, Jake was heartbroken. He didn’t like being the only dog, so his parents decided to get Addie to keep him company. Addie was a young Golden Retriever, but she ended up helping Jake in more ways that their parents had even imagined.
Jake had a lot to teach Addie as she grew up. The more time they spent together, the more they bonded. However, that playfulness came to a halt when their family discovered that there was something wrong with Jake’s eyes.
Jake’s Medical Needs
When the Atkinsons, Jake and Addie’s parents, first started seeing symptoms of eye issues with Jake, Addie was right there by his side. She would often lick his eyes in hopes of helping him feel better.
After months of visiting the vet and getting different treatments done for Jake, they discovered that his eyes could no longer produce tears. Because of this, the vets informed the Atkinsons that they would have to get Jake’s eyes removed. If they didn’t, it would be too painful for Jake and he would have to be put down.
At first, they were hesitant. Removing their dog’s eyes just seemed like such an extreme procedure. But of course, they wanted what was best for Jake. After talking to other dog parents that had gone through a similar situation, they felt comfortable moving forward with the procedure.
As serious as the surgery was, Jake was still his happy self after it was completed. He was only two years old, but he was such a brave boy. He would not be where he is today without the help of his caring sister though.
Jake and Addie’s Bond
Since Jake could no longer see his surroundings, he needed some time to readjust. Addie refused to leave his side though. He had taught her things when she was a puppy, so now it was her job to return the favor.
“For a really long time afterwards, she was always really close to him,” said Kim Atkinson. “He had to map out our house again, and learn where things were.”
The Atkinsons would try to help Jake get around, but he seemed uninterested in receiving their help. They would try to show him how to go up and down the stairs, but he just seemed like he couldn’t do it. However, as soon as Addie came along to help him, he was able to go down the stairs with no problems.
He can always smell and hear Addie when she’s near him, so he follows her around and learns from her. They are inseparable, and she has helped him to become his playful self once again.
“I think people try to give her superpowers, but it’s a lot more simple than that,” said Joe Atkinson. “I think their story is about just being there for each other and that it can make the difference.”
It’s no secret that dogs can help people smile, but as it turns out, they can benefit from each other as well. Without Addie, Jake likely wouldn’t have the confidence that he has today. Being blind doesn’t hold him back from enjoying life, and he is so lucky to have his sweet sister by his side at all times.
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