Wednesday, March 21, 2012
World War II vet matches soldiers with service dogs
Alida Knobloch was born with a rare lung disease that would require her to carry an oxygen tank most of the time. Worried the tank might limit Alida's mobility, her parents decided on a unique solution - a service dog, NBC's Today show reports.
Alida's father, Aaron, saw ads for service dogs on television and knew that it was a perfect fit. As a result, the family was introduced to Mr. Gibbs, a specially trained golden doodle that carries the oxygen tank wherever 3-year-old Alida goes.
There's still some work to be done in training Mr. Gibbs. Alida presents a challenge in that he cannot stray too far from her, even as she becomes more active.
"If she wants to get on the bike and go down the driveway he has to learn to run alongside," Ashleigh Kinsleigh, the dog's trainer, told Today. "If she's going to ride on a slide, he has to learn to climb up and slide down behind her."
Service dogs have proven to be invaluable to people living with disabilities, and organizations like Canine Assistants are committed to making sure people have access to the helpful animals. Frendo supports the charity through fee-free donations. Sign up now.
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