Reddit user thepoultron posted a photograph of her dog Bowie, a 6-year-old Chesapeake Bay Retriever, on the popular site, hoping to share a simple but poignant message of love with the online community. But she never could have expected Bowie’s photo and story would go viral, touching the hearts of thousands in only a few short days.
Bowie’s life will likely never be the same after a freak accident that left the happy Retriever severely injured. A couple of weeks ago, Bowie was playing fetch with another large dog, her 95-pound son, Mac. The two dogs were running excitedly when they rammed into one another by accident. The impact of the collision was devastating, and Bowie fell to the ground in pain. When her owner rushed her to the veterinarian, x-rays revealed Bowie’s back was broken, that the once active and vibrant Chessy was now paralyzed from the waist down.
The news was devastating — how would Bowie be able to enjoy her favorite activities with her now limited mobility?
“She lives on a farm and loves to run and swim,” her owner thepoultron posted on Reddit. “She still had another five-plus years of an amazingly active life to look forward to…but now she can’t do anything on her own.”
After two weeks of treatments and monitoring in the veterinary ICU, Bowie finally returned home. Her worried family wondered how the now-disabled dog would fare in her new situation, if she would seem depressed. But in an update, thepoultron revealed her beloved Bowie is just as upbeat as ever.
“If you saw her, you’d still say she’s the happiest dog in the world,” the Reddit user said.
Bowie attends physical therapy sessions three times a day, and thepoultron says she and her family are confident their pup will continue to make great strides in her recovery.
“She has deep nerve pain sensation still present in one leg and her tail,” she explains. “I actually saw her move her tail today, so we (including the doctors) are quite confident she’ll regain some (if not all) of her motor functions in at least one leg.”
Despite everything that’s happened, Bowie’s family is determined to help their four-legged friend live a full and fun life no matter what, even if that life has to be on only two legs from here on out.
“She’s seen me through a lot in the last six years,” her owner said. “I’m happy to be here for her the next six-plus to come.”
“You may never walk again,” thepoultron posted with Bowie’s photo, “but we’ll never stop having adventures together.”