She couldn't even open a door without dislocating her joints. Then a service dog came into her life and changed everything. - Most Exciting Planet

She couldn’t even open a door without dislocating her joints. Then a service dog came into her life and changed everything.

Clare Syversten from Northolt, UK suffers from the degenerative bone condition Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. Because of her condition she can’t do anything without dislocating her joints. Opening doors, getting undressed, taking shoes off – the simplest activities that require a little strength have been a huge challenge for Claire since she was a teenager. She is 26 now and is confined to a wheelchair, her life has been miserable until Griffin, the adorable golden retriever cross, came to her life. You can’t watch their story without tearing up. Please, SHARE.

There are many ways to get a service dog: train your own dog (with or without a trainer), send your own dog to a program or private trainer, and obtain a dog from a program or private trainer. It generally takes 1–2 years to train a service dog. The dog must be trained to help person’s disability and must behave appropriately in public. Prior to this special training, the animal must have good foundation in obedience. It costs about the same to either train a rescued adult dog from animal shelter (if he doesn’t have any health or behavioral issues) or to purchase a puppy from service dog breeder.
The most common disability skills a service dog is taught:
ALERT:
– To people approaching
– As a response to disabled person’s name
– For specific sounds, such as alarms, ring tones, sirens, or vehicles backing up
– For specific smells, such as smoke or gas
– Go seek help in case of a medical emergency
– Press a medical alert button for designated emergency contact
– Wake-up alerts
CALM:
– Cuddle on cue
– Interrupt repetitive movements or compulsive behaviors
– Lead to uncrowded area or place to sit down
– Respond to an anxiety or panic attack
– Interrupt nightmares or night terrors
DETECT:
– Allergens, such as specific foods or triggering odors
– Low blood sugar levels
– The presence or absence of people in a designated area or location
– Change in cortisol levels
RETRIEVE:
– Bringing personal items, such as keys or cell phones
– Carry items for disabled person
– Deliver payment to store clerk or receive and carry merchandise
– Open and close doors, cabinets, drawers or appliances
– Bring medication at a designated time
SUPPORT:
– Act as a positional buffer
– Turn on and off lights
– Open and hold doors
– Provide bracing for the disabled person to stand up
– Tug or hold clothing, socks and shoes to assist with dressing and undressing
– Pull to assist manual wheelchair propulsion.
Sources:

http://www.psychdogpartners.org/resources/frequently-asked-questions/faq-training-basics/