Many addicts have one best friend, often their only friend. Their loyal pet who loves them unconditionally. Getting sober is a long journey that carries a lot of stress and emotional ups and downs. There are recovery centers that recognize the power of having a pet with you through the tough transitions and help ease anxiety and depression.
Addiction recovery news outlets talk about long term success is the goal for all addicts going into recovery. Lifestyle changes, habit changes, personal changes, and even location changes are a part of this difficult transition.
There is a constant that does not have to change, an anchor to hold onto when the journey gets painful and difficult. That constant is the unconditional love of a pet. We are starting to see the correlation between those coming into recovery with a loved one by their side and successfully staying in recovery once the program ends and real life begins.
Dogs are used for various kinds of recovery. Therapy dogs are used in nursing homes to cheer up the elderly. They are used in children’s hospitals where children have terminal or long term illnesses. They assist those with PTSD, anxiety, depression, phobias, and many other ailments of body and mind. It makes sense that these sensitive animals would also help an addict through recovery and beyond. Having a pet is no longer an excuse not to go into rehab. It is quite possibly the best tool to help make the decision to take that first step as well as the second, third, and fourth
There are treatment facilities that cater to the pet owner. These facilities welcome both pet and owner into the program in an understanding, caring, loving environment. Having other people’s pets around is also a benefit. It helps create a bond between patients. It is a great way to break the ice and start sharing, caring and being comfortable with opening up to the healing that needs to take place. The reason, the IT, the force that led to addiction in the first place needs to be revealed, dealt with and a plan put in place to work through the issues to eliminate the need to self medicate. Just having others who understand, who are struggling, who want to succeed and who have a pet bff can open the door to healing others may never find.
Having a piece of home at all times.while in recovery lends to the on going success of the program. There are rehab facilities all over the country that are ready and waiting to help those who want to take that step but cannot leave their pet behind. That excuse is off the table. The help is there, ready and waiting.