Six-year-old Oliver has a visual impairment, epilepsy, cerebral palsy and autism. For a long time, he wouldn’t express his emotions with his family. That changed when a dog, Lucy, entered his life.
“From the very start whenever Oliver had an meltdown he would shout for Lucy and she would come and lie down next to him and calm him down. The effect she has on him is incredible,” Oliver’s mother, Sarah Smith told BBC News.
Guide Dogs UK unites families with dogs that have been trained to become official guide dogs, but didn’t quite make the cut. The dogs are re-purposed through the program to become “buddy dogs” for kids who are partially blind and could use the training the dog has been given, the BBC reported.
“He never said ‘I love you’ before, but he said it to Lucy after meeting her for 30 seconds. Then it took him about a month, after the first month I found him one night, I was away with work, and he said I’ve got something to tell you mommy, I love you,” Smith said.
“To see another side to him, a side we hoped existed but never knew was there, is just amazing,” Smith added.