When you’re a dog lover, you become accustomed to putting their needs before your own.
Yet there are times in life when we have to put our own needs first. Think of it as putting on your own oxygen mask before assisting your neighbors with theirs on a plane! During moments like these, having a support system in place can make or break those healing efforts.
One charity in Dallas, Texas, provides that all-important support system to people who are addicted to alcohol or drugs. Oftentimes, these individuals resist entering rehab programs because they don’t want to leave their beloved pets behind. That’s where Dogs Matter steps in!
According to their website, the organization provides “temporary dog foster care placement and supportive services specifically for addicts and alcoholics in treatment and transitioning soon into recovery.”
Bernard is one person whom Dogs Matter helped recently, and he couldn’t be more grateful for the support they gave him and his dog Blu.
Bernard said he was “blessed” with Blu back in February 2020, right before the novel coronavirus pandemic required everyone to stay home and avoid contact with others. Blu entered Bernard’s life at the perfect time, giving him the love, affection, and support he needed to get through.
Unfortunately, Bernard struggles with addiction, and in October that same year, he relapsed.
“Right away I knew I had to return to treatment,” Bernard added. “Of course, due to COVID this was not possible. Thus, Blu and I had to deal with it all on our own for a while. During the winter freeze we kept each other warm when my power was out for a week. The isolation from the world was only bearable because of my boy Blu.”
As Bernard searched for in-patient rehabilitation services, he worried about how he would care for Blu while he got the treatment he needed. A friend told him about Dogs Matter, and the moment they connected, the organization began working to find a temporary foster home for Blu.
“They called me and within a week they had a foster family in place… absolutely amazing!!!” Bernard said. “And it didn’t cost me anything. They are a nonprofit and took care of all expenses. This lessened my stress and eased my mind that Blu was going to a safe place for the next three months.”
Not only did Dogs Matter keep Blu safe while Bernard recovered, but they also kept in touch once he left the treatment facility and returned to his regular life with his canine bestie.
Their Aftercare Program provided him with plenty of free services, including counseling, peer support, housing resources, and even help with a pet deposit for Bernard’s new place.
“These guys are fantastic! Never judging and super supportive,” Bernard said. “I am forever grateful and will tell anyone who is going through similar struggles that Dogs Matter is the way to go.”
Bernard spent close to three months recovering, and when he got out, he couldn’t wait to see his best friend! Dogs Matter captured the moment when Blu and Bernard reunited, and it’s so beautiful to see how much they care for each other.
Watch the two of them reunite in the video below, and be sure to share this story to wish Bernard well on his recovery journey.
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