Truman the Epilepsy Service Dog

Truman the epilepsy service dog

Image by Matthew Almon Roth | CC BY-NC 2.0. Some Rights Reserved | Flickr

Truman the pit bull lives with his owners Mike and Tina, who suffers from epileptic seizures. Truman had been living in a shelter for 3 months since being found wandering aimlessly and frightened in someone else’s back garden at 4 months old.

When they met him, Tina and Mike instantly bonded with him, decided to adopt him and bring him home. What they didn’t know was that their new dog had been only 24-48 hours from being euthanized due to the reputation that comes with his breed.

Such was the attachment Tina felt to Truman when they met, she immediately knew he could be the one to become her much-needed seizure service dog (at the time she had been having seizures for over 4 months). Truman clearly felt the same way, as he would not leave her side and became diligent and protective of her.

Truman shone in his new role

With a new home and family, Truman shone in his new role and became Tina’s shadow, following her everywhere. Truman immediately began two years of seizure dog training. He learned different commands from Tina and Mike. He also learned how to respond in public, and how to retrieve items for Tina when she’s having a seizure.

Part of Tina’s condition is that her entire body can become rigid and stiff, causing her to fall over. Truman was trained to detect this hours (or even days) before Tina’s has a fit. He uses his large body to hold her up and licks her face to wake her up. Once awake, Truman retrieves the nearest phone and brings it to Tina.

Over the last 7 years he has saved Tina’s life 4 times

He literally bursts through closed doors to prevent Tina from falling and hitting her head. He also warns her not to go driving if a fit is on its way. In recognition of their dog’s hard work and loyalty to Tina, the couple have named the store they own after him – “Truman’s Outlet.”

Truman clearly has a great relationship with his owners – Devon Dogs can help build up your relationship with your dog! Why not come along to one of our workshops and see for yourself?  Check out our training events calendar.

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