My name is Christopher Myers SSG Ret. I was medically retired from the Army in 2015. I found myself struggling to adjust to regular life outside of the military. I was suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI and other complications along with TBI. I was also struggling to deal with my Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD. In addition, I had a severe back injury that made any day-to-day task difficult for me. While dealing with all of these injuries I found myself alone, depressed and shutout from the rest of the world.
Things began to spiral out of control but with the help of my wife and friends, I began to seek help and treatment through the Veterans Affairs (VA). Quickly I began to notice that most of the answers doctors had for me were pills, pills, and more pills. My already limited day-to-day life only got worse as I began to only live inside my head and numb to the world around me. Again, my wife said we needed to find another approach to seeking treatment. Therefore, with recommendations from my psychiatrist I began to do research on the benefits for service members with PTSD and other wartime inflictions and service or companion animals. Then I found Pets for Vets.
After all the research I did on service and companion animals, I found PFV to be the best fit for my situation. I really just needed a companion animal rather than a service animal. I wanted a companion dog to give me something to look forward to every day. Someone that was not going to judge me or ask me about how I was feeling. Someone that could just be there and always be happy to see me or just lounge with me on the couch when I was having a bad day. I met with the trainers and described my ideal dog. They could not have done a better job. Once I met Buster, I knew that we would be forever friends. He was the perfect match for my family and me. He helped me get out of the house and get exercise. Buster would wake me up every morning with a lick and wagging tail. He helped me feel not so alone and even went to many of my doctors’ appointments with me. Buster is more than just a dog to our family he is a member of the family. I never fully understood how much he meant to me until the day a tragic accident occurred. Buster was with me working on a friend’s farm when a truck in the road struck him. It was devastating to my family and me. Only by the grace of God did he pull through after surgery, care, and the generosity of PFV. This accident only brought Buster and me closer together. Buster means the world to my family and me and we could not ask for a better companion. We saved him but most of all he saved me.