Having a dog as a pet is on the rise…
There are now more than 75 million pet dogs throughout the United States, outnumbering any other country. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 38 percent of American households own one or more dogs—the highest rate of dog ownership since the AVMA began recording statistics in 1982.
This number could be going up due to the amazing and vigorous training being done by service dogs and service dog trainers. More and more dogs are being trained to work as crucial diabetic alert dogs, medical autism service dogs, and, most interestingly, seizure response service dogs.
Seizure Alert and Seizure Response Service Dogs
One amazing group of service dogs, far different from regular pets, are seizure alert and seizure response service dogs. These dogs are part of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and are recognized as vital service animals. They have rights from anything such as housing, air travel, and even voluntary registration in their state.
Why do these service dogs have so many special rights?
The answer lies in their crucial role in warning, helping, and comforting their owner through a seizure. Seizure alert dogs have the ability to recognize the moments before their owner will go into a seizure. Seizure alert service dogs are trained for two years and have an innate ability to detect an oncoming seizure. This is believed to be through their highly sensitized smell, which can change in their owner prior to a seizure. These dogs are born with the ability to predict a seizure and can use warning signs such as pawing or pacing, to warn their owners of an imminent attack. Seizure response service dogs also play a big role in the aftermath of a seizure.
Seizure Response Dogs to the Rescue
After a person with epilepsy has been given a warning of their seizure, either a seizure alert service dog or a seizure response service dog can aid in getting help for their owner. It’s important to note that seizure response service dogs are different from alert dogs, but can still provide access to a telephone during a seizure, assist with tasks related to other disabilities, and can even retrieve medications, food, and find someone for help in a worst-case scenario.
Providing Much Needed Relief
Persons with disabilities such as epilepsy report feelings of fear in leaving their home and not knowing when their next seizure will be. Luckily for them, seizure response service dogs and seizure alert dogs work as a team, giving some much-needed comfort, reassurance, and life-saving measures. With the use of service dogs, persons living with epilepsy can now continue the day confidently, knowing that their four-legged companion can predict, help, and possibly save their life in case of any emergencies.
If you or a loved one are in need of a Seizure Response Dog, please contact SDWR today.