Former child star Tatum O'Neal has blamed her drug bust in New York City on Sunday, on the death of her dog. She is claiming the loss of her pet drove her to need cocaine.The actress, who wrote about her recovery from a heroin addiction in her 2004 book A Paper Life, was arrested by NYC police on Sunday night, after she was spotted by a narcotics team exchanging money with a man three blocks from her home in the Big Apple. At the time of her arrest, O’Neal allegedly told cops she was "doing research" for a film role, but she has now changed her story, claiming the passing of her dog three weeks ago "set her off".She tells the New York Post, "There’s no excuse for what I did. (But) I lost my Scottish terrier, Lena. That seemed to set me off."She got old. She got cancer. She was the fabric of our family. We had to let her go to heaven. My daughter and I had to put her down. It was too horrible for words."I couldn’t get out of it. I was going to my psychiatrist. I was doing everything I could do. I have the disease of alcoholism. It’s lifelong. I treat it every day by going to my 12-step program." And she has hailed the New York authorities for saving her from turning her back on her sobriety. She adds, "I’m still sober! Just when I was about to change that and wreck my life, the cops came and saved me! "I was saved by the bell, by the guys in the Seventh Precinct." O’Neal has been charged with one misdemeanour charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance and is due in court on July 28th.