Saturday, May 7, 2011
The Benefit of Dogs for Autistic People
I think people should have pets if they can. I know that old people who live alone do better if they have a pet. I have a lot of pets, plus we took in two abandoned puppies to foster til they were adopted in the summer. That was so fun I would love to do it again. They were stuck in a plastic bag and dumped in an alley. They were so unlucky to be born to a cruel home, lucky to be found and rescued, and even super lucky to find wonderful homes.
In my case, animals are such good friends. They tolerate, accept, love, and never judge. It isn’t a dog’s character to reject someone because he can’t talk well or because he stims. In this way dogs are our superiors. They are not judgmental. They don’t harbor prejudice. My old dog used to sleep in my room if he noticed I was sad. My sweet shepherd really watches me to see I’m with the group. If I lag she stops walking til I catch up.
I also think dogs force me to deal with noise and unpredictable actions. I am sure this has helped me in life. I think they have taught me a lot. It is interesting how many autistic people have dog phobia. If you are autistic I think dogs should be introduced when you are young. Then the symptoms of terror never develop. I think if we didn’t have dogs when I was so young I would be phobic too. Now I can see how they helped me. It’s interesting in so many ways how they did.
The truth is cats are cool too, but not as loving. I didn’t learn so much about me from cats, but I did learn worlds of stuff from dogs. I learned toleration of noise and change. I learned that I am loved in spite of my disability by them. I learned that loyalty is important, to love long walks, and that I can control a large dog on a walk. This gives me confidence.
See you soon.