Give me a good ‘ol pet story and you’ll have me in the palm of your hand. I adore the human/pet dynamic and how they bond with their owners – especially dogs and cats.
And the best stories are always the ones where the pet surprises its owner with their amazinging-ness. Perhaps they had a bad day, or they’re simply chilling with Netflix. Doesn’t matter – when your pet does something that melts your insides to mush, that’s how we know the bond is real and worth it.
Reddit users took to the question, “What is the kindest thing a pet has done for you?” and we picked the top few. Here you go!
10. They know when to say good-bye
“My old doge did me a kindness. I had her for 17 years. Got her long before the doge meme became a thing, and while she was difficult as hell (seriously, think twice before getting one of these dogs) she was my lifelong companion and I loved her to death.
She went downhill pretty quickly, and there was one day when I knew that it was time to take her to the vet one last time. I went to work and set about getting the arrangements together to take her in the next day. It was heartbreaking.
I got home, and she was out there in her favorite spot in the yard. Sometime after I’d left for work, she went out there, laid down in the sun, and went to sleep.
She was a good girl.”
9. How to break up any argument
“One time my family was discussing money and we started yelling at each other. It got pretty heated until my dog showed up, barked at us once to get our attention, and then dropped a potato that he dug up in the yard in front of us. He nudged it forward with his nose and gave us this “we good now?” Look. Everyone just started laughing and it calmed everyone down.”
8. Bonding through broken bones
“In late April 2007, I was called by a shelter in Louisville, Kentucky, to ask if I would rescue a dog that they’d picked up. ‘Jet’ was a young male Basset Hound who had been hit by a car and had a shattered leg. I ran the Basset Hound Rescue in Kentucky at the time. Of course I said I would take him. I got him transported down to me and got him to my vet.
There, they said it would cost around $3,000 to pin the leg back together but only $150 to amputate. Because it was a back leg, and he was not your typical deep-chested short-legged Basset, I opted for amputation.It was rough because as the bruising healed from the car accident, it strained against his stitches and I had to take him to the vet and have them keep him overnight while they took all the stitches out and let the wound drain.
We always had a number of foster dogs at our house and we also had a dog of our own who was pretty dominant. One day, about six weeks post amputation, Jeremiah (as I now named him given that he hopped like a bullfrog) was in the kitchen with a couple other dogs when two of the other ones got into a fight around him. Not wanting him injured, I scooped him up and turned to leave the kitchen.
As I was leaving, I hit my foot on the door frame breaking my foot. I ended up in the emergency room and that night came home on crutches. The next day I got up on the couch with a pillow under my leg, as I was told to stay off my feet and keep it elevated. Jeremiah decided he needed to comfort me as I had saved him in the middle of the fight. He struggled for a good 15 to 20 minutes until he was able to pull himself up onto the couch unaided. This was the first time he had gotten on the couch. I had him up for adoption but at that point I couldn’t let him go. I paid his adoption fee and I kept him.”
7. Presents come in living packages
“I was super sick with a kidney infection and hadn’t been able to really get out of bed for the past couple of days. My cat was with me for most of the time. She went out for a bit and when she came back, she jumped up on the foot on my bed and was really still. I knew something was up and sure enough she had a mouse/baby rat in her mouth. I jumped up and ran out of the room, she followed me with it.
My mom’s boyfriend who was also sick came out of their room to see what the commotion was.
He tried to get the mouse from her, but she wasn’t having any of that and clawed him. She went back outside and when she came back in she didn’t bring another gift, but just curled up and went to sleep. Looking back it’s kinda sweet. She brought me a present, tried to make sure that I saw by following me with it, and then fought someone trying to keep it.”
6. They are our healers
“I had a black Labrador called Ben. He was everyone’s best friend and my mum called him her wee shadow. My granny passed away in 2014 after quite a long traumatic few months. We were her carers and there right til the end so after she died home felt like it was in the middle of a storm. I remember going home to wash a few hours before it happened and Ben climbed on to the couch with me and pushed his head into my neck and let me just cry. A few days after she died my mum was sitting at the kitchen table just weeping inconsolably and Ben just walked up quietly and put his head on her lap. When she leaned in he started licking her tears and trying to get at her ears to make her laugh. Without him, I don’t think we would have got through those days. We talk about him all of the time so even though I can’t hold him or go to the river and see him stick his face under water, he’s always with us.He was the very best boy.”
5. Even the stubborn ones show love
“My aunt had this female cat named Gizmo when I was a kid. Gizmo was a savage bitch who had no time or patience for anyone. She spent most of her life outdoors. By choice of course. She had free reign and could come and go as she pleased. She’d come in at night to sleep and be back out again. She had no interest in people at all and chances are if you tried to touch her in any manner she’d f*** you up.
I was probably around 8 years old and I was spending a weekend at my aunts when I got the worst flu I ever had in my f***ing life. It was so bad I still remember it in vivid detail nearly 30 years later. I was sick for days and it was absolute agony.
About a day in I couldn’t take it anymore and I just started wailing. There I was laying on a pull out couch in the den surrounded by buckets, sweating, crying and begging for it to end, and in the house comes Gizmo.
This cat jumped up on the couch and cuddled me and licked me and did everything she could to comfort me. Not just for a little while, but for days. Through the entire ordeal. She stayed right there beside me only leaving to eat and head outside for a couple minutes at a time. She didn’t want anyone else near me either. If anyone got in arms reach of that couch she’d turn on them and chase them out.
I remember my aunt and cousins being amazed. To this day they still bring it up from time to time. That cat never showed an ounce of consideration for a human once before or after this event, but she was bound and determined to stick it out with me until the end and did just that.”
4. When souls collide
“My yellow lab knows me and my emotions to a near psychic level. When I’m stressed, she will come to me, and gently nuzzle her muzzle under my arm. She’ll cuddle up by my side, and just sit with me. It’s the dog version of taking me in her arms, to just hold me.
When I’m in a good mood, she will smile her dog smile, and wag her whole butt. When I’m home, she’s by my side. She understands a sizeable vocabulary, and I swear, she even understands my lame jokes (because I talk my dog like she’s a person). She has a look that’s kindly patronizing, that she’ll give me.
Our souls are intertwined.”
3. They give big smiles and licks to wash away our tears
“We’ve only had my dog (a rescue) for a few months. Despite his large size, this poor pooch is afraid of just about everything and often looks to me for assurance and guidance so usually I’m the one who’s comforting him.
But, just today I came home in a terrible mood. I had just finished crying ten minutes prior and as soon as I open the door this big goof comes galloping towards me with the dopiest smile on his face… Typically he’s a very lazy dog who never wants to play, but instantly he wanted to rough house. We played for a good half an hour chasing each other around and play fighting then afterwards he gave me a good cuddle.
Whether it was intentional or not, I felt a lot better very quickly.”
2. Real life Lassies do exist
“My family had a German shepherd when I was young. She was part of a line of police K9s and was the smartest dog I’ve ever known. One time we were at a remote job site my dad was working at. There was an old abandoned cemetery in a grove of trees a couple hundred yards away. My brother and I were playing near the job site when Cop Girl, our imaginatively named K9, came running over and circling us. There was no mistaking that she wanted us to follow her to the graveyard, but my brother and I were 6 and 8 at the time and too afraid to follow so we went and got our dad. He followed Cop Girl to the woods, and found that my mom had gone to explore the graveyard and twisted her ankle, falling into a bed of fire ants. She was eaten up pretty badly and rushed to the hospital. She had to wear some body wrappings for awhile but came out of it OK. She said she told Cop Girl to get help and without hesitation she had bolted off for us.
So I’d say possibly saving my mom’s life was a pretty kind act.”
1. Dogs will share their favorite things
“My dog doesn’t let her toy carrot out of her sight, NEVER ever let anyone touch it etc. She protects it like her life depends on it. Growls, snarks, even bit my mom once when she tried to wash it.
I’ve been going through sh** and I was crying on my bedroom floor, at first she just came and lay next to me (which in and of itself is adorable), and then she brought me her carrot, and at first I didn’t react much cuz I was quite .. busy crying, so she started nudging it at me and poking me with it, got on my lab and put it on my chest and sh** and ffs that made me happy cry even more. Once I took it, she just lay next to me. That was so pure. She gave me what she felt was the most important thing ever and waited for the effect of said important thing she valued. We. Don’t. Deserve. Dogs.”