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Service Dogs For Dysautonomia?


Kate2011
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Hey again guys,

I just had it recommended to me that I get a service dog through a local non-profit. Does anyone have any experience with service dogs? They said they can train the dog to call a programmed number (911/neighbor/whoever) with a doggie button if you pass out, wake you up in the morning, prompt you to exercise, sit with you after you pass out, recognize triggers and help reduce stress that can increase symptoms, even bring you the phone or other objects if you're really having a down day. I thought it was a pretty impressive demo :-) I'm seriously considering it, if anyone has any experience I'd love to hear it. Also, the owner of the non-profit asked me to try to think of some other things that could be useful. Any ideas?

Thanks,

Kate

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In December 2011 I met another POtS patient who used a service dog. I met her in the waiting room at Dr. Thompson's office in Pensacola, FL. In that case she had atypical seizures and the dog would alert her before a seizure or faint so she could protect herself from getting hurt during the fall. She said the dog was an enormous help. I'm sure the dog helped in many ways beyond what I recall.

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I had a yellow lab (Hunter)for 14 yrs. He wasn't a trained service dog but he could sense when I was going to pass out or when I would start feeling bad(any other time he was just a fun loving dog all about playing ball). He actually knew something wasn't right before I did. He would walk beside me when I was dizzy and he would try to keep me from standing up by pushing against me or crying. He would bark and whine to keep me from going down stairs when he sensed things. Many times, when I didn't listen to him, I ended up passed out at the bottom of the stairs. I learned to pay attention to his warnings and be careful when he acted differently. Many times, I woke up from a pass out or bad gray out with him licking my face. He even jumped in the tub and woke me up one time when I passed out in tub. Im home alone a lot when my husband works. He was an amazing dog and great companion. My husband and family members were amazed with how my lab knew about my illness and gave me warnings. It was like he took care of me and we were very close. I lost him about two years ago. It took me awhile to get over the loss(which I guess I'm still working on). I got a 1 year old lab/golden mix (Barley)at the pound about a year ago. He doesn't have ability to sense my illness but is a joy to have around the house and having him makes me walk. Like Kit said, remember dogs(even service dogs) have needs too and you have to think, if you have the ability to care for a dog properly with this illness before getting one. Some days caring for a dog while I am feeling bad is very hard work. I love both my dogs in different ways because of their different personalities. However, I think Hunter was one of a kind and sent by god to help me through the beginning of this illness,when I didn't know how to see the warning signs myself. I thought about a service dog when I lost Hunter but I was afraid that a service dog would be all work and wondered how much of a fun loving dog it would be, because Hunter was both. Hunter was an amazing help to me and I do miss having those warnings. Maybe my sweet Barley will develop this ability as we get to know each other better. However, I think Barley was mistreated before we got him and with this illness it gives me joy to think I am helping this dog to have a better life and feel love, because this illness keeps me from doing all I want to do for others. Now, I would never trade Barley in for the world but a service dog is a wonderful option. I miss those warnings.

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I just got a puppy and have been training it to be a service dog. He is 14 weeks old and I can take him anywhere I want already!!! Make sure that you get to keep the dog and you are the one to train it not other people so the dog makes the bond to you. If you have any questions message me!

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