James Middleton’s relationship with his dogs “saved his life.” The 36-year-old entrepreneur who is the younger brother of Catherine, Princess of Wales serves as the ambassador for the Pets as Therapy charity and has now explained that his late dog Ella became his “reason to get up in the morning” as he battled severe mental health issues.
James whose black spaniel Ella passed away in January at the age of 15 following a short illness also went on to recall his first pooch Tilly, noting that she became such a “solace” to him as a teenager.
Kate Middleton‘s brother told OK! Magazine: “It’s still challenging to talk about it but the role that my dogs played was fundamental in my recovery and rehabilitation. My dog Ella, in particular, was my reason to get up in the morning, my reason to get dressed and go outside and go for a walk – even if it was pouring with rain. “You go outside for 10 or 15 minutes, get that fresh air and you suddenly forget what was traumatising you.
“That respite from the thing that was banging away in my mind and causing me to not function properly was unintentionally helped by Ella and the rest of my dogs.”
I think Ella knew that I was not functioning to my full capacity and she was trying to give little encouraging signs to look after myself because I had a responsibility to look after her too. I do think [the dogs] played such an important role to the point that I do think they saved my life.”
Princes Of Wales‘ brother added: “I found a lot of solace in my dog, Tilly, particularly when I was a young teenager. She knew all of my secrets at the time – who I fancied and all of those little tricky parts that come with growing up that I never told anybody.”