Martin Law, C.Psych, describes how he used the TFT trauma technique to relieve his wife’s severe trauma after having witnessed the killing of their dog by a cougar:
It was a beautiful Fall Saturday in November 2001 when my wife (Viv) decided to go for a walk into a forested area close to our acreage west of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Our one year old Samoyed dog (Nakoda) happily trotted along with her.
One of our twin sons (David) tagged along as well, then decided to turn around for home after walking for 75 metres. To this day we are thankful that he chose to turn back for home.
About a half-hour into her walk a flash of light brown came bolting from behind a tree, knocked Viv to the ground, suddenly did a 90 degree turn and pounced on Nakoda.
Totally stunned and bewildered, Viv stood up to witness the cougar mauling Nakoda. The sights and sounds of Nakoda’s death were seared into Viv’s brain as she began to take in what was happening. In a panic she fled the scene, feeling helpless, confused and disoriented, as well as guilty for leaving her beloved dog to the mercy of this wild animal.
I was with our oldest son 60 kilometres away at a tennis tournament when all this took place. Fortunately, a distant neighbour who lived close to the site of the attack was home when Viv came crashing through the bush. He drove Viv home.
While this was a short drive, Viv was panicking, not knowing if David had made it home safely. Fortunately he had and for the rest of the day, Viv and our twins stayed with our neighbour until I got home.
Up until this time, we had no idea that cougars would be anywhere near our acreage. We later deduced that this particular cougar had actually been prowling around our home!!
When I arrived home, I heard the whole story. Not surprisingly, Viv was incredibly shaken up. We talked about what happened and I basically followed the standard protocols for defusing following a critical incident (per the Jeff Mitchell CISM model).
That evening Viv could not sleep, with classic flashbacks to the event, a re-living of the sights and sounds of Nakoda’s last minutes. The next day we Continue reading “TFT After Cougar Attack”