Pets on TV: Service Dogs Who Change LivesPublished April 15, 2010
Service Dog: Canine Assistants and Coyne PR
A new documentary on PBS, "Through a Dog's Eyes," unveils the journey of five individuals receiving a service dog. Many dog owners train their canine friends to turn off a light or fetch an item, usually for entertainment. But for service dogs, these are not tricks; they are life-changing tools to help people with disabilities.
The documentary focuses on Canine Assistants, one of the nation's largest service dog organizations, as it trains the dogs chosen to change lives. Jennifer Arnold, founder of Canine Assistants, leads us through the process of training the dogs and finding the perfect match.
But it's the heartfelt story behind each recipient that shows the importance of these service dogs.
Four of the recipients are kids with disabilities such as cerebral palsy and epilepsy, who hope the dogs will make childhood a bit easier and more fun. The other recipient served in Iraq as a captain in the National Guard and became a quadriplegic after a car accident. As they anxiously wait meeting their new companions, the recipients share the new opportunities the service dogs will provide; Chase, a 6-year-old boy diagnosed with cerebral palsy, hopes to walk with support of his dog.
After watching the trailer, I thought about the little ways my cat helps me everyday. He doesn't bring the remote control or dial the phone, but he's always there to provide companionship. Our pets are the nonjudgmental friends who will take our side in any situation. Though we may not have service dogs, we can personally relate to the life-changing impacts of pets.
How does your pet help you throughout the day? Share your comments below.
Check out the trailer below, but first grab a box of tissues.
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