What Is A Seizure Assistance Dog?
Approximately 65 million people around the world have epilepsy — over 2 million in the Unites States alone. Every year, the United States see's 150,000 new diagnoses of epilepsy. Many adults and children living with epilepsy admit that they often avoid certain everyday activities in fear of having a seizure in public.
There are two different types of Seizure service dogs. The first one is an seizure assistance dog and the second is an seizure alert dog. Open Range training falls into the assistance category as we do not train dogs to alert the owners of an on coming seizure. Our dogs are trained to support and get help. Eventually with continued training, in addition to handler bonding, the dog may learn to alert, but we do not guarantee it at this time.
- Provide comfort
- Provide a distraction during uncomfortable medical procedures
- Alerting another person to help during a seizure
- Pushing a life alert button
- Relieve Stress
- Constant Companion
- Retrieve medicine and food post seizure.
- Open Door and Turn on lights
- Tugging and helping the owner up
What is expected from our seizure assistance dogs here At Open Range?
The tasks of a seizure response dog are endless—you can teach as much or as little as you like. Since every person is different, their needs will be different and, therefore, the tasks their dog performs differ, as well. There are some typical behaviors that are desired from seizure response dogs. Some seizure response dogs are trained to begin barking to alert a family member or caregiver when a seizure begins, so they can provide medical assistance if needed. Some dogs are trained to lie next to their owners during a seizure to help the owners from injuring themselves, and others still will stand next to their owners to break their fall and prevent injury. These dogs catch their owners as they lose control and fall over. Seizure response dogs can be trained to press alarm buttons or other pre-programmed devices that call for help. They can be trained in mobility assistance, such as pulling wheelchairs and helping their owners get up and walk to a safe place before or after a seizure. Other dogs will retrieve dropped items, turn on and off lights, help remove clothing by tugging it off, and open and close doors.
Seizure response dogs are invaluable assets. They assist their owners during frightening and dangerous events, and they also serve as constant companions that provide unconditional love, friendship, and support. Many people with epilepsy and other people who have seizures are unable to live “normal” lives, and these dogs provide them with that opportunity. Seizure response dogs are truly lifesavers, in every sense of the word.