Otis was brought to my home July 22, 2018, it will be a day that I will remember fondly. On the first day Otis and I had a special connection, and we've been inseparable since. He is a constant companion of mine, helping me to remember that our freedoms have come at a cost. Otis helps me with stability up and down stairs, he is very intuitive, helping me come to grips with my emotions. He reduces my driving stress and breaks down barriers with veterans I work with.
I can’t imagine not having him, he has brought a sense of stability to my life and those in my immediate family. He is better known than I am in the Shenandoah Valley. Otis is a daily reminder to me and those who ask about his name, freedom comes with a cost.
It was my Primary Care doctor at the VA Hospital who suggested that I could really benefit from a service dog. Then my rehab team, cognitive rehabilitation specialist, physical therapist, physiatrist and occupational therapist were on board. They all thought that a dog could help enhance my mobility and ground my brain in the present moment with the opportunity for increased focus and concentration.Little did they know that Prince would do much more. With Prince, I am more physically active because I have help with my balance. I'm not afraid to go out and about because I'm not alone. Prince is always right by my side. We even go hiking and camping together! Life with Traumatic Brain Injury has many challenges. Prince helps to make lighter work with them. He's my helper, my companion, my co-worker, my closest friend, and my hero.I'm so grateful to Veterans Moving Forward for raising and training this incredible boy, Prince, the King of Dogs!!!