A-Fib Patient Story #66
My A-Fib Dog Yuki—a ‘Home Remedy’?
by Julia Fridrich, January 2014
Living in Fear
I am 42 years old. I have had A-Fib since I was 8 years old. This is quite a long time. As I have gotten older, my occurrences have increased in overall dizziness. But since I am older now and know when they are coming on, (dizziness, ringing in ears, sweating, nausea, vomiting), I stop what I am doing immediately. If I do not stop what I refer to as “my attacks”, I black out completely. I almost died once at 26. So, by being aware of my body and the symptoms, I have prevented fainting spells. However, that leads to a limited life living in fear of an occurrence.
my home remedy for my A-Fibs
So about 2 years ago, I got my second dog, a sweet black and tan Shiba Inu female by the name of Yuki. I noticed that she started to alert me when the attacks were coming on even before I knew. Don’t ask me how she does this.
Soon afterwards I will start to feel dizzy, and she begins to lick me all over repeatedly. She continues to comfort me while I feel my heart racing and experience the ringing in my ears and nausea. Amazingly, this action by her prevents my “episodes” from going to that next level of unconsciousness. She calms me. (As you know, experiencing an A-Fib attack subsequently enhances the A-Fib; i.e., induced stress).
Frankly, this has liberated me. I go many places with her by my side now. I wonder—could she be considered a ‘service dog’?
So this is my home remedy for my A-Fibs; this is my Yuki, my savior.
This is an A-Fib ‘work in progress’ personal experience. Julia and Yuki’s story is a wonderful, heart warming example of how a dog can indeed be a man’s/woman’s best friend. While Jula is seeing many specialists including an Electrophysiologist in order to figure out what’s causing her attacks, isn’t it great that she has Yuki?
We hope to hear from Julia again as she seeks a life without the burden of atrial fibrillation.