Andy Szasz of Southampton, England, came down with a terrible case of pnuemonia back in December and when he stopped breathing, he was placed in the intensive care unit. Doctors decided it would be best to place Szasz in a medically induced coma while he gained strength.
They predicted it would take about a week before he’d come out of it.
But then Teddy came to visit.
Szasz’s wife, Estelle, thought it would help her husband if their 4-year-old schnauzer-poodle mix, Teddy, came to spend some time at the bedside. She couldn’t have been more correct.
Once in the room (with permission from hospital staff), Teddy let out a rousing bark. So rousing, in fact, that it brought his owner to consciousness three days earlier than his doctors predicted!
“Ted is such a remarkable little dog in many ways,” Szasz said to reporters. “He’s clever, loving, loyal, funny and a right little character.”
Szasz adopted Teddy from the RSPCA in 2012, three months before he was diagnosed with bowel cancer. The man later beat the disease, due in part, he believes, to their unique relationship.
“I always tell people I rescued Ted and Ted rescued me,” Szasz said in a statement. “We certainly do have a special bond.”
Teddy was the only animal to win an award under a special animal category created this year and Szasz said he gave a high-five to nearly everyone he saw at the ceremony.
Teddy was honored Saturday by the RSPCA, alongside The Smokey Paws Project, an organization that strives to equip rescue vehicles with pet oxygen masks in the U.K., and celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, who campaigns to improve the well-being of farm animals.
He is the only animal ever to receive such an honor.
“They came to the awards and he looked well,” she said.