A Family Finds Hope and Healing From Their Brave Golden Retriever

Perseverance and hope are among the most inspiring parts of any story, and this one has plenty of both. It's about a brave dog named Watson and his loving family, the Manns, who relied on their hope and on Watson's perseverance to get them through a very trying experience in 2016 and 2017.


Annamarie Mann was working from home on the day that she found out that Watson had been hit by a car after escaping from the family's basement and wandering into the street. At the vet, Annamarie and her husband Geoff heard the heartbreaking news: Watson's spine had been severed in the accident—and his back legs were paralyzed.

"We were crying all week," Geoff says, as the family was advised that they should euthanize Watson.

Ultimately, the Manns decided that they couldn't give up on Watson's life without seeing what it might be like at home, post-accident. So they brought him back to their house and started helping with his slow recovery, a process that restored hope and happiness to the humans' lives as much as it did to their dog's.

"We all face adversity," Annamarie says. "It really has taught us that you don't just give up just because something's difficult. You don't just love something because it's easy for you. You love them because you love them—and then you work to take care of them."

In 2017, Watson won the Pet of the Year from the Omaha World-Herald newspaper! Video and photo credit to the Omaha World-Herald.

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