“Before adopting Caesar I was a workout junkie. I worked out twice a day. Weight lifting, running, yoga, boxing, you name it, I’d try it. Then I started volunteering at a local San Francisco shelter, Family Dog and Rescue, so that I could take dogs running to help get them socialized and out in the public to attract potential adopters. That’s when I met Caesar. It started off as three mile runs. Then a hike here and there on the weekend and just hanging out at home while I worked. I got hooked. I thought I could get away with just fostering him, but I failed at that.
About five months after bringing Caesar home permanently, and about a week after my 34th birthday, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. As my energy started to wane, I gave up a lot of the intense workouts, but kept walking with Caesar. He was the best reason to get up, dressed, and go outside. During those walks I would forget the nausea, forget I had no hair, and I could just be happy and watch him be a dog. There was a reason to smile and laugh.
When faced with obstacles that completely disrupt your daily life, something about having a pet who’s so emotionally connected to you reframes everything. Life is easier when you can take it moment by moment. When you have someone or something that makes you focus on those moments while you’re in them; it’s transformative. It gives your mind a break from the daily stress.
Even though I’m in remission now and back to a normal working schedule, I still prioritize my schedule with Caesar. If anything, our walks have gotten longer and more adventurous. My limits continue to expand with him by my side.”