Harnessing the Magic of a Furry Friend Changed Olivia’s Life

When Olivia was in the second grade, her parents received a call from the school. Olivia was sitting alone at recess crying and couldn’t tell them why. As time went on, it became clear that Olivia struggled with social anxiety and depression—and her parents started looking for answers.

Olivia was officially diagnosed with Bipolar II, a condition that causes significant anxiety and depression. As a young teen, this experience is particularly scary.

“I will get agitated,” Olivia said, “When I’m having an anxiety attack, I don’t know if I’ll be okay.”

The family started looking for ways they could support Olivia and looked into the K9 training program at Colorado Correctional Industries. Her parents thought harnessing the magic of a furry friend would help comfort Olivia. Then, they found The Stink Bug Project.

(Continued below the photos)

“They really wanted to make the right match,” Olivia’s dad, Cory, said, “They did. I think we got the best dog of all dogs.”

Thanks in part to supporters like you, we matched the family with Blue, a sweet, fluffy dog that provides Olivia with the unconditional support she needs. Now when Olivia is stressed or scared, she has someone to make her feel safe.