I'm Jamie - an autistic teenage girl which a disappointing amount of uneducated people continue to make nasty jokes about. I was housebound for 2 years due to anxiety and depression. All the medication and therapy did not work at all.
One day I was scrolling through Instagram and found this autistic girl who had an assistance dog and was like “what?” She can go outside? And go shopping? With this little task trained pupper of hers? I considered it for a while - by a while I mean literally a year - but didn't think I was “disabled enough” to have one until I brought it up with my parents and my therapist.
Both were supportive so I began searching for a prospect as no organisations in the UK currently have short waiting lists and dogs for high functioning autism. I wasn't planning on adopting a dog but came across Beau [who didn't then have a name] who was a 14 week old pup at the time.
I went to meet Beau the same day I found him and fell in love with him immediately. He spent the whole meeting cuddled beside me. Beau was abused and neglected in one of his 3 previous homes so we weren't sure if he would make it as an assistance dog but we planned on keeping him regardless.
One day he began naturally alerting. We worked through his fears and his driven and intelligent self had the perfect personality for an assistance dog. One year down the line and he's the most loved and spoilt pup on the planet and my fully trained owner trained assistance dog.
I am now able to go out whenever I please, I'm back in school. I still have my moments but he's there by my side throughout it. He loves tasking and working and we’ve met and made some amazing friends.