I Gave Up a Doctor's Salary to Keep My Sanity -- and My Dog

From Living With Dogs
April 26, 2013 - 1:00pm

Editor's Note: This is Dr. Sue Nielsen's story, as told to Angie Bailey.  From the outside, my life looked pretty ideal: I was a successful family physician who'd held a variety of leadership positions. I was married and loved to spend my vacations traveling and taking photographs. What most people didn't know was that my relationship of more than 18 years was crumbling and the stress of my job was catching up with me. Before my husband and I divorced, Rico and I found each other. No, Rico wasn't another man -- he was a tiny 8-week-old Chihuahua puppy, which one of my patients snuck into the clinic to show me. I resisted; after all, I had always been a cat person. My kitty of 18 years, Hobbes, was independent, which was perfect for my hectic lifestyle. I was not looking to add a little dog into the picture. Plus, with my relationship's chaos, I didn't know if I could be completely present with the little guy, who would need lots of attention.  Share this image I was instantly smitten. Photo by Sue Nielsen function changeWidth(obj) { if(parseInt($(obj).parent().width()) > parseInt($(obj).width())) { $(obj).parent().css({'width':$(obj).width()}); } if(parseInt($(obj).width()) < 150) { $(obj).parent().find('div.image_overlay').hide(); $(obj).parents('div.embedded-Media-image').find...

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