How a Dog Saved My Life: From Anxiety to Hope

Owning a dog seemed impossible to a girl with severe asthma, allergies, eczema — and not just a little anxiety. After all, I’d almost died several times from asthma attacks and anaphylaxis from food allergies. Doctors joked that I should live in a bubble or on a sterile boat in the middle of the ocean, only ingesting water and gluten-free crackers. I would laugh at their comments, but inside I ached at the thought of a future without pets.

To read more, head over to the Huffington Post where my essay discussing Bottlenose Dolphins, anxiety, allergies, and my dog (yes, they are all related) was published this morning! So thrilled!

How a Dog Saved My Life: From Anxiety to Hope


Thanks for reading! ❤

19 thoughts on “How a Dog Saved My Life: From Anxiety to Hope

  1. This is in reference to your previous post but I felt it was relevant here as I was directed to your site from Huff Po- Hi Courtney, while I completely agree you deserve to have a dog-what I do take offense to is how you referred to your acquiring a dog in the Huffington Post. You stated you adopted your dog. You actually bought your dog. If you were completely comfortable with your decision you would have stated that. And I feel this post may be a bit exaggerated due to your own personal defensive mechanisms. While I do agree there are many “unbalanced” types in the dog rescue world (I know this first hand as I have been a volunteer on the front lines for Best Friends Animals Society in Los Angeles for close to 20 years now and go to one of the highest volume county shelters in the city to pull dogs out of there for BF), your experiences seem overly dramatized to me. I live in LA, there are lots of nutty people here. Never once in almost 20 years have I witnessed someone getting chewed out because they had a “breed”. And I myself had a dog-bought from a pet store-for 16 years. He was the reason I began my volunteerism in the rescue world, because I wanted to give back to his kind all the love he had shown me. While my dog is a Heinz 57 shelter mutt now I don’t look at anyone’s decision to get a dog-however way they do it with the exception of pets stores (that are banned in LA now as these dogs come from puppy mills that are cruel and inhumane) as a bad thing. Especially knowing what I do about the love they can provide.
    I believe energy attracts energy-and if you are harboring a guilt mechanism on some level about your path to a dog-you will probably keep attracting crazy people who will agree with your own inner dialogue.
    Look at the Obama’s-they made a decision based on much the same reasons you did yet they don’t try and justify their decision. They made the best decision for their family. And it was obviously a good one as they just got another dog-Sunny Obama-great name!
    Maybe you can take all that guilt and put it to good use by volunteering some time somewhere you won’t have an allergic reaction or even doing what the Obama’s did and make a generous donation to your local shelter to help them fight the good fight.
    But just poo poo the Adopt Don’t Shop movement in a blog post does not do you or anyone else any good and says more about you then the movement.

    • Wow. Just Wow. Does it give you some sort of perverse pleasure to spread your negativity on people’s blogs? Also, what is your obsession with Courtney anyways? I noticed you not only had to put this comment on Huff Post, but also went out of your way to post on her blog and put it under 2 other posts. It seems to me you are just trying to get attention and trying to turn Courtney’s wonderful experience with ADOPTING a dog into something reprehensible…maybe because of your own deep-seeded issues and feelings of inadequacy. I feel sorry for you that you have to take out your anger on complete strangers, and I hope you think twice about next time you decide to do so because if you PERSONALLY knew Courtney you would know that she has a heart of gold, a true passion for animals, and has suffered more with her allergies and asthma than anybody EVER should. Frankly, it’s a miracle that Courtney is even walking this earth today, so please get down from your high horse and try spreading some love in the world…life is too short.

    • I disagree with you how many people “ADOPT” a child or children and pay THOUSANDS of dollars… but they do not say my “bought child” they say they ADOPTED… SAME THING!

  2. Beautiful post! I can totally relate. My brother has had a black lab-chow mix for over a year and, on the occasions I’ve had to “puppy sit” her, my mood, energy and just overall sense of awesome were x1000. Just looking at those floppy ears makes my heart all cuddly and erases all tension.

    • Thank you so much! Isn’t it amazing how dogs do that to you? They just brighten everything. I sometimes make myself nauseous with how much I love everything Henri does. I’m like one of those new moms who posts status updates about the bowel movements her baby is taking! Okay not that bad yet, but maybe soon…

      Going to get your own dog soon, maybe?

  3. Congrats on getting onto the Huffington Post. Such a lovely article, so glad you and your husband found Henri!

  4. Congrats on being published! It was a great story. Before my husband and I got married, he was working a lot of evening shifts. I was so lonely sitting at home and my anxiety would tailspin. So I said I wanted a dog. My Frannie has been an amazing companion ever since!

    • Thank you!! Aren’t dogs the best for that? I felt the same way while my husband was out of town last week- I was so grateful for Henri! What type of dog is Frannie?

      • She’s a lab mix, chocolate & tan. We got her at the SPCA. I am fortunate enough to not have pet allergies. I saw a video of her rolling over for a belly rub & was smitten! She’s been my girl ever since.

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