October 19, 2020
It turns out that humans are not the only creatures who need emotional support animals (ESAs) or specially trained therapy dogs: Just as sighted dogs step up to help their blind canine friends; so, too, can high-spirited confident pooches give timid dogs a sense of equanimity and aplomb.
According to a report by Goodnet, Arnold—a two-year-old Weimaraner who lives in Perth, Australia, with his owner Carolyn Manalis—was mauled by a German Shepherd when he was just a pup. Although Arnold already was a bit insecure, after the incident with the German Shepherd, he started suffering from separation anxiety and was afraid of large dogs.
Worried pet parent Manalis then met Frank, a miniature dachshund who was up for adoption, according to Tanks Good News. Despite his tiny stature—he weighed 66 fewer pounds than Arnold—Manalis recognized Frank’s upbeat, confident nature right away. She decided that Arnold needed an emotional support animal—and Frank was the ideal candidate for the job.
In an interview with Metro, Manalis described how the dogs reacted when they met: “It was love at first sight! Frank gave Arnold the confidence boost he so needed. “Frank has helped Arnold regain his confidence to be able to play and wrestle, whilst learning that this doesn’t always mean he’s going to get hurt or attacked. Having a little friend to play with has been the perfect therapy for Arnold to heal,” she said.
Arnold is convinced he is Frank’s big brother, or maybe his dad. Just like older siblings show the younger ones the ways of the world, Arnold has taught Frank house training etiquette, barking-at-strangers decorum, and even safety rules, such as how to remain still at a road crossing.
Manalis told Metro, “We swear Frank thinks Arnold is his Dad. Being the second child, he definitely didn’t get as much training and attention as the first. Most of what he has learnt, he has learnt from Arnold. Frank copies everything Arnold does, to the point where if Arnold barks or makes a sound, Frank will mimic it directly after, almost like a parrot!”
This is one beautiful reciprocal relationship and it demonstrates how beneficial having more than one dog can be. According toDogs Health, dogs were once pack animals. Since they used to live in the wild in large family groups, they are social and enjoy companionship. And, as Arnold and Frank have shown, two heads may be better than one, but two tails are simply adorable!
Research contact: @goodnet