I know there was some interest and questions about Diabetic Alert Dogs here on RTF. I thought some of you might enjoy reading this excerpt from a journal a parent is keeping about the pup they got from K C Owen's Tattle Tail Scent Dogs.
This is just one of many success stories from KC's pups. Awesome job, KC!!!!!Day 8: Tattle Tails Angel of Hope!!
That is Hope's AKC registered name, and the best description of her there is. I remember very clearly the moment it really dawned on me that she really was an angel. Shortly after bringing Hope home she had woken me up during the night for a low alert. The following day I shared it, KC asked me if I saw an angel in the doorway that night, my response was that there was no angel in the doorway, but that she was sitting with me working a low alert.
A year after Abbie's diagnosis I stumbled upon diabetes alert dogs or DADS. It was something we wanted to look into with Abbie. The problem was that all the programs I looked into had 10+ year old requirements and the minimum cost was around $10,000. I was heart broken. Abbie was only 5 at the time.
Over the next 2 years the dream of getting Abbie a DAD was never far from my mind. I continued searching without much success. It was a hard pill to swallow.
In May of 2012 I was made aware of TattleTail Scent Dogs and KC Owens. I can't even begin to explain the elation I felt in that first phone call with her. This dream that was so far from reach, was suddenly within my grasp. At the time we were looking at a 2013 puppy, all that mattered was we were on the list! And then something changed, someone had backed out and we were to get a puppy from the upcoming litter!
On July 7, 2012 our angel was born. The real potential of what this meant was lost on me then, I, we, didn't realize how our lives would change in that moment that Hope entered this world. On August 26th that angel came home. I'm not gonna lie, those first few months were HARD. Abbie wanted nothing to do with her, a complete 360 from where she had been. Hope alerted, but it seemed like it was hit and miss those first 6 weeks (it was really our inability to understand her). Will and I were "young pups" then too. We found our groove though and Hope knew she had to compensate for complete Neanderthals at times. That first time that she brought me Abbie's meter to alert a low left me in tears. Hope learned that she needed to tell me to STOP and listen.
Over the last 7 days I have told you how delicate this disease is, how sporadic and how painful. Your battling a disease that has no patterns and NO warnings. That right there is how our life changed because of Hope. We have a warning now, we have an angel. For everything diabetes tries to destroy, Hope tries to save. For every low that tries to kill, Hope sounds the alarm. For every high that causes damage, Hope stops it in its tracks. For every tear that is shed there are the wings of an angel that wrap around our hearts and souls to help ease the pain. Hope is the most important soldier in our battle, she is our "spy" if you will. The enemy, diabetes, can't stay hidden from her, it can't surprise her. Abbie is alive today because of Hope. Instead of visiting a cemetery, I get to watch her laugh, play, cry, struggle and succeed. I get to watch her learn and grow and love. I get to continue to watch her future unfold and help her follow her dreams. This is possible because of the acts of a selfless woman who wanted to bring hope to the lives of others.
Hope has changed our journey in battling type 1 diabetes, but the day needs to come where she gets to hang up the vest while Abbie puts away the meter and they can walk, hand in paw, into the future and leave type 1 diabetes in the past.