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Does anyone else have an assistance dog?

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secondbee
secondbee Community member Posts: 23 Courageous
edited January 2018 in Coffee lounge
Hi All, 

My dog has been formally accepted to train to be my assistance dog. I have no sensory impairments but struggle with balance and with hand problems. His jobs will mainly be to pick things up from the floor, bring me medications and water as needed, and to help me up when I fall. 

I’m interested to speak to anyone with a service animal, particularly if you trained them yourself. I don’t know anyone in the real world with an assistance dog and it would be lovely to network with some people here if possible. 

B

Comments

  • Pippa_Alumni
    Pippa_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,790 Disability Gamechanger
    edited January 2018
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    Hi @secondbee, how exciting for you! I hope it'll be a great help. 

    @Ehit and @lynneholloren have posted about assistance dogs before, perhaps they would like to share their experiences? You might also like to read Bobbie (@SupportDogs )' guest blog about her own experiences. Do keep us updated with your progress!
  • Ehit
    Ehit Community member Posts: 24 Courageous
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    Hi @secondbee, who are you registered with? Rey, my dog, and I are working with Darwin Dogs. I am training her myself, along with a trainer, who comes once a fortnight. She is a 12 month old chocolate labrador and is getting ready for her Level 1 assessment; she has passed her puppy/primary level. 
    I have fibromyalgia, agoraphobia, anxiety and depression (plus other things related to fibro). Rey is learning to pick things up for me and get my meds too. She gives me confidence to go out and helps with my mental health generally. She is learning to raise the alarm if I pass out, plus other things. 
    I don’t know what I’d do without her. 
    E
  • maryharrison
    maryharrison Community member Posts: 1 Listener
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    I would love to be able to train my dog to assist me but not sure how I go about it. 
  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,665 Disability Gamechanger
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    Hi @maryharrison
    You might want to get in touch with Support Dogs who do some great work! @SupportDogs can you help?
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • secondbee
    secondbee Community member Posts: 23 Courageous
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    @maryharrison I filled out an enquiry with Dog Aid and the rest, as they say, is history. Or at least, ongoing 


    http://dogaid.org.uk/
  • Ehit
    Ehit Community member Posts: 24 Courageous
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    I was being put on the waiting list on one charity, but it could take years, then you have to go to the charities centre for a 3 week residential so the dog can learn it’s jobs.
    My dog is 12 months old and she’s doing jobs for me already. I chose the breed of dog I wanted (with help), but I had to pay for her (the only downside).
  • Tasha95
    Tasha95 Community member Posts: 7 Listener
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    I have a guide dog. She is my first one and she has made a massive difference in my life. 
  • debbiedo49
    debbiedo49 Community member Posts: 2,904 Disability Gamechanger
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    I think this is more common in the USA but wil prob become more common here in the future. Watching documentaries on children with autism it seems to help having a service dog in some cases.
  • susan48
    susan48 Community member Posts: 2,221 Disability Gamechanger
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    I have my, therapy dog. He’s not formally trained etc but my reasoning is he helps me go out, know if I’m really depressed, cuddles me or in full flight panic attack, he sits next to me pushes his nose under my chin so I look at him and focus my breathing.
    Hes been my life saver on many occasions  <3
  • Liam_Alumni
    Liam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 1,100 Pioneering
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    Hi everyone!

    Wonderful to hear about all your assistance dogs and how they support you. Scope's now sharing stories and photos about support animals on Twitter every Monday for #MondayAnimalSupport!

    There's more information in the announcement in the community news category on the community, but if you fancy sending in a story and a snap, contact the social media team on socialmedia@scope.org.uk.
    Liam
  • Ehit
    Ehit Community member Posts: 24 Courageous
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    Ehit said:
    I was being put on the waiting list on one charity, but it could take years, then you have to go to the charities centre for a 3 week residential so the dog can learn it’s jobs.
    My dog is 12 months old and she’s doing jobs for me already. I chose the breed of dog I wanted (with help), but I had to pay for her (the only downside).
    Rey is now 18 months old and has passed her puppy and level 1 assessments. She has a way to go before being fully trained, but she’ll probably qualify aeound Christmas. She’s struggling with ‘stay’ and young children/babies, of all things. We’ve come to the conclusion that she spends most of her time with adults and when we go out all the children are in prams. My young cousin visits us and Rey is fine with her (she, my cousin, is very small for her age too). 

    Rey’s my best buddy and goes everywhere with me. If I drop something she’ll pick it up (run round with it) and give it to me. She will find my meds and she has a little shopping bag which she can carry about, so if I’m upstairs and I want my husband to have something I have I put it in the bag and she can carry it downstairs. She will carry it around the supermarket too, so I can put my shopping in. I could go on and on about what she can do, but mainly if I’m ill she will stay with me, raise the alarm and/or lick my face until I come round. She’s my chocolate hero!
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