Touching story of a man who was told he was going to die, and the dog who saved his life

The fine people at the Mutual Rescue YouTube channel have released their first video short, “Eric & Peety,” which has just gone viral.

It tells the story of Eric O’Grey and Peety, the shelter dog he adopted at the Humane Society Silicon Valley.

“In 2010 my doctor told me to buy a funeral plot because I would need one within the next five years,” O’Grey says in the film’s opening. “But I’m still here because a shelter dog saved my life.”

At the age of 51, O’Grey had reached 320 pounds and his social life was deteriorating as fast as his health. With medical expenses amounting to over $800 a month and the list of negative conditions pilling up, he was advised by a nutritionist to adopt a shelter dog in order to get more active.

“I remember telling the lady that I would like an obese, middle age dog so that I would have something in common with him,” O’Grey continues in the clip. “Over a period of time, we really formed an inseparable bond, and one that I’ve never really experienced with another person or animal or anybody.”

A year of walks and play dates later, O’Grey was able to lose over 140 pounds and eliminated his diabetes. During this year, Peety was also able to lose 25 pounds, and regained a playfulness and joy that wasn’t there when O’Grey first found him at the shelter.

“Beyond unconditional love, Peety taught me absolute loyalty,” O’Grey says in the video. “He looked at me in every sense as though I was the greatest person on the planet. I decided that I wanted to be the person who he thought I was.”

Ready your tissue to watch the touching conclusion of Eric and Peety’s story.

Mutual Rescue is an initiative started by the Humane Society Silicon Valley. According to the Humane Society’s website, Mutual Rescue’s job is to share stories of the dogs it fosters out and their adoptive parents and how they’ve improved each other’s lives.

If you or someone you know has a similar life changing story with a pet companion, you can fill out and submit this form on the Humane Society’s website.