Dog Helps a Little Boy Feel Better About Himself

Quaden takes Buddy for a walk.
Photo Courtesy of Yarraka Bayles via

Five-year-old Quaden Bayles has been the subject of much ridicule in his short life because he suffers from a form of dwarfism called achondroplasia. According to his mother, the poor boy could barely leave the house without someone saying something awful to him:

“I’m really shocked and appalled that quite a lot of the negative attention comes from adults,” she said. “Shopping centers are the worst. He had a kid come straight up to his face last month at our shopping center and say, ‘Oooh, yuck!'”

But now Quaden has an ally—a sweet, nine-year-old Shih Tzu rescue dog who suffers from the very same condition that Quaden has. Buddy’s dwarfism has really changed the way that Quaden feels about himself:

“Quaden now proudly accepts that he’s got dwarfism, because Buddy’s given him that reason to think that it’s cool,” said his mom, Yarraka Bayles. “So he tells everyone, ‘My dog has dwarfism like me,’ and it’s the first time we’ve ever, in Quaden’s five years of life, heard him say the word, because we are not allowed to say dwarfism or achondroplasia.”

It’s wonderful that Quaden can see himself in Buddy, and the two have a wonderful relationship.

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