Pets can have a huge impact on anyone’s life but for the disabled persons of the society, these lovable creatures can completely transform their lives.
And that’s exactly why the parents of 8-year-old Hugh from Birmingham decided to bring a canine friend for their disabled son.
Hugh was born with FOXG1 syndrome – a rare genetic disorder causing structural brain abnormalities and severe impairment in development.
According to the International FOXG1 Foundation, this horrible disorder can’t be cured and can only be managed.
“This severe condition is characterized by seizures, inability to control body movements, and lack of speech,” the foundation describes.
“While the spectrum of abilities is quite broad depending on the exact genetic mutation, many of our children cannot walk or talk, and they struggle to communicate their most basic daily needs.”
Although the symptoms of this disease vary from individual to individual, the common indications include poor eye contact, difficulties feeding and excessive crying.
Poor Hugh had to overcome more challenges than many adults but, fortunately, his life changed for good ever since his mom brought him a 12-week-old Springer Spaniel.
Hugh has now found a brilliant new friend in little Spaniel, who goes by the name of Barney.
In a footage, recently shared by his mom, Hugh and Barney can be seen cuddling with each other in the most adorable way possible.
The little pup nuzzles into Hugh’s arm as the boy lovingly strokes him. At one point, the two of them even share a high five.
Hugh’s mom, who captured the lovely video on July 30, shared it on social media and wrote: “Barney is learning to be incredibly gentle and calm with Hugh.
“This isn’t something we taught him and both my husband and I were moved to tears just watching the beautiful and unexpected interaction between Hugh and Barney.”
Just 3 weeks ago, Hugh’s mom also shared photos of his young son bearing an angelic smile as he plays with his pet friend. She wrote with the photos: “We thought long and hard about getting a dog.
“On the one side we hoped it would be good for Hugh, that they could have a special relationship but we were worried that our chaotic life (the frequent hospital trips) wouldn’t be fair on a dog.
“We looked at rehoming/adopting a dog but couldn’t be sure that an older dog would be able to handle Hugh and all the tubes and machines and beeping and erratic movements.
“But a puppy isn’t easy and, I’ll be honest, I want sure if we’d made the right decision getting one. Even though we spent ages deciding.
“And then tonight this happened. And I know that this is the right thing for our family. Hugh even stroked him and reached out to hold Barney’s paw.
“What makes this even more amazing is that this same 13 week old puppy spent most of the day running around wildly, jumped on, and nibbled the ears of, various children over the day, managed to tangle himself up in the nets of a football goal and has pretty much been hyper and bouncy and living up to his ‘Springer’ spaniel name.
“Maybe I caught him at a good time, or maybe he’s learning Hugh needs something different. Who knows? Either way, it was a beautiful, beautiful moment.”
We thought long and hard about getting a dog. On the one side we hoped it would be good for Hugh, that they could have a…