Blind Pit Bull Wound Up Comforting The Girl Who Rescued Him
"He has taught me that love is not what you see, but what you feel."
For one blind pup in Pennsylvania, life might look pretty tough to the outside world.
In reality, he's making life better for everyone around him.
Bear, a 1-year-old pit pull, was hit by a car and promptly rushed to a nearby animal hospital. Some might call it fate that 15-year-old Katie Frame's mother just happened to work there.
Sadly, the accident left Bear horribly disfigured - his injuries threatened to leave him blind. Bear's previous owner was unable to pay for his surgery or continue treatment, so Bear was signed over to the veterinarian in charge of his care. Rawhide Rescue, Inc., a local rescue organization, offered to pay for Bear's surgery as long as he had a home to go to.
That's where Frame and her mother came in. They decided to bring Bear home with them. But they couldn't have known all he would give to them in return.
"When I first saw him, it looked like something out of a horror movie," Frame told The Dodo. "So my mother and I decided to open our home and hearts for him."
After medical staff determined the injuries to Bear's eyes were insurmountable, Bear underwent multiple surgeries to remove them. But this barely had an impact on the white and brown dog's personality.
"Due to his lack of eyes, he is obviously blind," Frame said. "But, in all honesty, it does not seem to bother him one bit. He runs around like a mad dog when he's playing with his ball (the ball makes noises when it's moving and he just loves it so much)."
"Living with a blind dog is not so different from living with a regular dog," said Frame. "He bumps into things sometimes, but he eventually mapped out the house in his head and he gets around easier than I thought he would."
When he's not spending quality time with his favorite ball, or navigating his new home, Bear makes sure to put in face time with his new buddy, Reese, a golden retriever. At first, it wasn't clear the two would hit things off, but, eventually, they grew on each other.
"When he first met Reese, it didn't go too well. Bear went a little crazy," Frame said. "But we decided to give it another shot. This day was one of the greatest days."
After a little warming-up period, Reese and Bear got along famously. "He played with her in the water, he walked next to her, and not once did he freak out. This was a total breakthrough for him." Frame said. "Now they play all the time. They are best friends."
Today, Bear gets along with everyone he meets. He's been known to greet strangers by jumping into their laps and licking their faces, according to Frame. Perhaps unsurprisingly, he's also particularly reactive toward sounds. "When I played a video of dogs whimpering or a fox laughing," Frame said, "he would tilt his head and his ears would perk up. It's the cutest thing."
While Bear clearly enjoys his new family, Frame is the one reaping the benefits that having a loving pet provides.
"Before he came into my life, I was so worried that I was wasting my life," Frame said. "I felt like time was moving faster than I was. But now I feel like I have purpose. He has significantly improved my life."
"I cannot imagine life without the goofball," she said. "He has also expanded my knowledge and understanding of dogs and how they work. I never would have thought about special needs dogs and how I can participate in helping them find homes if it weren't for Bear."
"He motivates me to get up and actually participate in life," Frame said. "He makes me smile when I'm feeling gloomy, and he gave me a reason to enjoy life."
At night, Bear can be found snuggled up in Frame's bed - "He's such a blanket hog," she said - but during the day, he prefers to enjoy his leisure time on the couch, on the floor in the middle of the hallway, or in Frame's mother's bed, just to test it out.
"Bear is an amazing dog. Nothing holds him back from leading a normal happy life," Frame said. "Not his blindness and not his breed. He has taught me that love is not what you see, but what you feel."
"I love him despite his flaws and despite my doubts I had about a blind dog," she said. "Special needs dogs are just like any other dog. A special needs dog is only an adjustment, not a life-shattering event. A special needs dog owner will run into obstacles and have doubts, but that's okay. Every obstacle is doable. And every doubt will surely be overcome by their love for the dog."