Apr 11, 2010

Why a Service Dog?

So, why a service dog and how would one help me? There are many reasons, some deeper and more complicated than I feel I could explain clearly in writing, but for the main and most important reasons, here is a list I have compiled the lay out how a service dog would help to better my daily life:
  • Act as a counter-balance while walking with the use of a special harness
  • Navigate me around objects and people when in crowds and other disorienting environments
  • Halt at curbs, sudden drops and other changes in ground elevation
  • Alert me to potential approaching dangers that I may not notice
  • Brace and act as an anchor if I have trouble standing or need help getting up off the ground.
  • Retrieve items indicated with a laser pointer that I cannot bend down to reach without risking loss of consiousness or back injury
  • Retrieve painkillers if I am in too much pain to reach them myself
  • Allow for more self-sufficiency and safety when a family member is not around to assist
Then of course, there are other benefits as well. A service dog provides companionship, comfort, emotional and spiritual support. They can also help to break social barriers that a cane or wheelchair might otherwise create. Caring for a service dog also provides the opportunity for exercise through grooming and playing, therefore keeping their partner up and moving, delaying deterioration. They can even provide a non-judgemental shoulder for someone with an illness to just break down and cry on when they would otherwise feel like a burden when talking to another person about their pain.

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