Diabetic Alert Dog Client Comments and Alert StoriesHey Mike/Cathy,
I am not sure if this is your direct email or what, but I wanted to share a story about Olive from this last week. I didn't know if Rachel or Cathy had shared it with you but it is pretty neat.
I was driving home from Denver with Olive in the back and she sat up abruptly (which typically indicates an alert), so I pulled the car over and tested. My 'score' was fine so I got back on the highway and started to drive again. 5 or 10 minutes later Olive started to whine really really loudly. It sounded like she had been stepped on or was hurt and so I pulled over again and looked to see if she had gotten her paw or something stuck. She appeared fine and I was frustrated at first; why would she be whining like that for no reason. I then though maybe I should test again. I did and I was 55! I had been dropping quickly and she was trying to tell me! Pretty Neat!
Thank you again for all your work with me and Olive, she is truly a light in my life and a little angel with fur. I am so blessed to have her and I know she was a special dog to you and I appreciate the opportunity that you have given me to let her be my service companion.
Devon and Olive
Beaver Creek, CO
Since I've had JD my life has become so much easier. I may now live my life without worrying at any moment I might suffer from a low blood sugar.
He is starting to alert at night which is giving me the confidence to be able to sleep alone comfortably knowing I'll wake up the next morning.
He is my best friend and my hero,without him I would not be living today.
Awesome Alert by Jude! I thought I would train Jude tonight at 12:00 AM. Put a low BG scent sample on Ella tonight while she was sleeping and Jude alerted. Put the sample away and he re-alerted. Good boy Jude (I thought he was just alerting because it was just there). He alerted a 3rd time. Tested Ella's blood sugar and she was 102, waited 10 min. and she was 90 and dropping. Jude alerted again!
Lessons learned: Trust your dog, Always test BG before training, and if it's in the middle of the night and Jude alerts get him outside before he pees in the girls' bedroom!
I will gladly take the wet carpet in this case!
Father of Ella, 4 year old diabetic
Okay, so you know I have to brag on Gracie! Before Gracie was born we sent low scent samples from Abbie to Wildrose Kennels in Oxford, MS, to be used in training Diabetic Alert Dogs. Glennis started working the puppies with low scent before their eyes were even open. She would drag a sample along the ground and the puppies would smell it and follow the scent. She would then either give the puppies a sweet paste treat or let them latch on to Brandy as a reward. Glennis continued to work the pups with low scent daily until they were ready to go home. Glennis ROCKS!
Anyway, the first day we picked up Gracie we were on our way back to the hotel for lunch. I was in the front seat holding Gracie and Abbie was in her carseat in the back seat. Gracie started going NUTS! She was whining, barking, clawing and then she started howling. I thought it was separation anxiety from being away from her mom, or perhaps she needed to potty. We pulled over to let her potty and she got calm.....got back in the car......NUTS again! She was trying her best to get to Abbie in the back seat. I put her in Abbie's lap and she started licking her like crazy! I checked Abbie's glucose and she was 62. THIS FROM A 6 WEEK OLD PUPPY!!!!!! GO GRACIE!
That night we went out to eat....same thing.....Abbie was 70.
Friday night in the middle of the night Gracie woke me up by chewing on my hair and whining like crazy. I scolded her. She then started doing the same thing to Abbie. I scolded her again and then took her to potty. I was tired and wasn't THINKING! When I got back in bed she started attacking Abbie again.....licking, biting, and whining. I decided to check Abbie and she was 43! Party, party, party for Gracie!
Abbie woke up with the croup on Saturday morning, and we had to start Prednisone. Prednisone makes her blood sugar go really high, so we haven't had any more lows to work with!
Gracie is so smart. She will already come and sit without a treat. She just turned 7 weeks old on Monday! We started "watch me" today and she is doing great! She is such a little blessing!
Special thanks to Glennis, Mike & Cathy, and Rachel! Wildrose Labs ROCK!
Shana, mother of Abbie (6 yo Diabetic) & Gracie (Wildrose DAD pup)
Dear Cathy and Mike,
JD is doing fantastic!! He has caught every high and low that I've had. Except for my night time lows and highs. My dog trainer is going to try to help us with that since he has woken during the day to alert me. So we know he can do it! He has started to wave and bow by himself,I'm so proud of him!!! He catches my lows 30 - 45 minutes before I am low or high. He is doing very well with his obedience. We take him to a trainer 3 times a week to help me improve my skills as well as his. I take him on walks often which keeps his energy down. I have taken him to stores very early in the morning so there aren't many people around to distract him.
He has been very good every time we take him in a store. He watches me,and stays with me. Here is a good alert story we have from yesterday: I took him swimming yesterday and he was having so much fun!! So excited!! I rinsed him off when he was finished with his swim and then for a short walk to let him dry,and when I brought him in he was still excited from his fun! I left him with my mom so I could take a quick shower because I got GROSS from the yucky pond. She told me he started pawing the air,being very high strung,as soon as,I walked back up to him he picked up the bringsel, he did a wave. I checked myself,and i was 302. I think that after he settled down from his fun he smelled my smell still hanging around in the room and he started going crazy to alert me!
Other times he has been napping and woken up and alerted to a high and low. He has done well at my church,there is a lot of loud music and he will just sleep on the floor. He is so smart. He learns so quickly. I'm very proud of him. He is my hero,I don't know what I'd do without him. I'm glad to work with him every chance I can. I can not wait to go to the clinic in Colorado. He enjoys doing what he does and I'm so happy I have him. He's my best friend. He takes care of me,he helps take care of me,and he won't leave me. My sugars stay within range because he watches so carefully. I definitely keep his nose busy. He has handled the horses very well. He won't bark at them or show any signs of aggression towards them. He amazes me with how smart he is. He heels beside me off lead, (though I don't do that very much right now).
If he is being high strung and I tell him to do something he settles right back down and does his job. I'm very blessed to know such amazing people and workers. People like you are incredible.You have givin me the most special gift ever,a service dog that is completely everything I wanted! He saves my life more than once a day! I feel like the luckiest person on the earth!!!! Thank you so so much for making my dream come true. I have been talking to my pastor about helping for a fundraiser and he said that would be fine ,but at the moment they're busy with summer retreats. In a few weeks when things are settled down we are going to go in and talk specifics. They seem very excited about seeing JD working with me and helping me with him. Thank you again! God answered my prayer by putting you and JD in my life. I will write soon.
Love, JD and Deanna
Here are my results from the past 2 weeks. 44% of my bloodsugars were in range Only 8 bloodsugars less than 80! Lucy alerts to at least 2 lows per day that I treat for and thanks to her I'm rarely below 80. Average bloodsugar is 171. Its a huge improvement from where I was a year ago. I wish I could fix highs as fast as I can fix lows. I need to do another a1c soon too.
I'm a 22 years old and have been a type 1 diabetic since I was four. My amazing dog came from Wildrose Kennels and her name is Lucy. She's been saving my life since January 2009.
Drake woke me at 3:30 AM this morning. I got up and did a test; my reading was 102. I told him I was OK and he went and stood by the front door. I dressed and gave him a quick chance to "get done". Numbers 1 & 2 arrived quickly and I was back to bed. As soon as I laid my head down he had his front paws on the bed and licked my face and nibbled on my ear. I said OK I'll check again - My number was 67! LOW! (optimum is between 80 & 120) Lots of "Good lows" kisses and petting. So, yes I'd say he's alerting! Often and accurately!
I had no hassle at the airport. Last night he was a dream during the 2 & 1/2 hour stress test. He amazed everyone at the medical facility. He has no idea what "curbing your dog" is all about. He just looked at me in disbelief when I told him to "get done" in an empty parking space. He definitely prefers grass. Hope you are all doing well and your pups are happy. To anyone considering a Wildrose DAD - GO FOR IT! I couldn't be happier with the training the Wildrose staff did with Drake. Thank you all! You've changed my life for the better! Better than I ever imagined!
Tom & Drake
From: Patience, Phoenix, AZ, son Seth, and Wildrose DAD, Rex:
We left last Tuesday and drove to Seattle to pick up our other dogs. Rex alerted on the way up, but not a whole lot. As expected. We stayed 1 day and drove home to AZ and arrived here today. Last night we stayed in a hotel and Rex slept with Seth in the bed ( he usually sleeps in a kennel by his bed) well Rex jumped off the bed and went to our bed and jumped on the side and woke up JR. Seth was high at 246.
Then tonight when we got home Seth was high at 304 when we put them to bed. Rex in his kennel as usual, Rex was whining and carrying on, so I went to check Seth and his BG was 94. That was 1 hr later, a very rapid drop. Rex was going nuts and pawing at the cage and whining. He surely knew that drop was too much. Now they are all sleeping well and are quiet.
From Abi, Aberdeen, MS, Wildrose DAD, Mr. Darcy:
Diabetic Alert Dog, Mr Darcy, is officially a college student starting Friday! We registered for classes today - Darcy was a show off and alerted to three lows while we were standing in the never ending lines! Thanks Darcy! -Abi
From Lyndsay, Canada, Daughter Bayleigh and Wildrose DAD, Dexter
On June 8 Bayleigh had an MRI done. We got to the hospital and told them what Dexter does, how he alerts for her high's and lows. They told me how there was NOTHING to worry about because kids always go high during the stress of an MRI. I told them "no THIS kid will go low, I guarantee it! So against the doctors advise, I sent her in a little high.
We got to the MRI clinic and they informed me that no metal was allowed in the room, meaning Dexter had to be out of vest and fully off leash!!! I was thinking "uh oh" but he surprised me and was a perfect gentleman! He went into the room and laid down beside the machine and stayed there (very alert and watching Bayleigh's every move) Alerted about 10 mins into the test for a high so THE DOCTORS out of all people trusted him and decreased her IV glucose drip a little, he was still agitated 5 mins later so they decreased it more. About 8 mins later he alerted for a low and was SUPER insistent on it so I told them to give her LOTS of sugar so they did and about 15 mins later she came out of her MRI at 141 and remained stable! What a super duper dog!
I was diagnosed with type one diabetes when I was four years old. Since then everything from school, to playing with friends, going on vacation and sleeping has been much more challenging for me then for a typical person. I must plan ahead for everything I do and if my blood sugars are out of control then I often have to miss out on activities. My biggest issue is that I am very sensitive and my blood sugars respond accordingly. Stress, excitement, staying up too late, sleeping too much, eating at a new restaurant all strongly effect my blood sugar making it very difficult to control. I have had seizures from low blood sugars that have left me paralyzed for hours and even now when my blood sugar gets too low my muscles lose strength to the point that I have crawled and scooted across the house to get sugar. My high and low blood sugars that aren't caught early enough give me migraines that cause me to vomit for hours and weakness and tiredness that lasts for days. I have missed school, work and class because of my symptoms of being low, like weakness, loss of mental clarity and unawareness. Despite all of this I was determined to become a physical therapist. I started my first semester of graduate school and while I loved it, my diabetes was making it so impossible I considered dropping out several times. One night I was remembering how in elementary school my friend's chocolate Labrador whined and barked to wake up my friend and her mom moments before I had a seizure. I thought maybe it was something that was unique to chocolate labs. Lots of research on the internet led me to getting a beautiful black British Labrador from Wildrose Kennels.
I got my puppy when she was four months and named her Lucy after my favorite comedian and actress Lucille Ball. I will never forget the first time I met her and how we were playing with a ball when she dropped the ball and ran to me to lick my mouth; my blood sugar was 235 and I knew I had found the answer to my prayers. While, it seemed too simple for Lucy to lick my mouth to let me know that my blood sugar was out of range, getting her to do it consistently and accurately for high and low blood sugar was not so easy. Lucy is with me 24/7 and we are training 24/7. Every trip to the grocery store, library, or school is a training exercise and when we come home there are new things to learn. The training is fun and the results are unbelievably rewarding! In December 2008 my weekly blood sugar average was 280 mg/dl. Now in July 2009 my weekly average is 185 mg/dl. In general Lucy alerts every time I get to be 200 and she rarely lets me drop below 100 without warning me if it will go out of range. Lucy usually alerts that my blood sugar is dropping well in advance of when I would normally eat and because of this I do not have to stop life while I eat and wait for my sugar to come back up so I can think clearly or drive safely. Since Lucy doesn't let my blood sugars get to hypoglycemic levels I no longer over eat for fear of having a seizure or have a rebound affect which is my body raises my blood sugar really high really fast to protect itself.
Lucy's alert does not replace testing my blood sugar. In fact, I test it quite a bit more then I usually do but, it's worth it. My proudest and happiest moments have been when Lucy kept my blood sugar between 99 and 150 for nine hours and when she ran herself into my bedroom door to get to me before I had a seizure. Training Lucy is an incredible amount of work that doesn't end but she has made every minute worth it. She has allowed me a chance at a normal life undeterred by Type 1 Diabetes. I love Lucy!