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Service dogs for diabetes

Discussion in 'Other Hot Topics' started by Jeff, May 25, 2010.

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  1. Jeff

    Jeff Founder, CWD

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    Discussions about service dogs for diabetes belong here, given what seems to happen every time the topic is raised.

    Genuine discussions are fine, but I will reiterate some of the rules of CWD:

    1. Claims need to be backed up by science. Right now, there is no science to support dogs, so be careful.

    2. Discussions of personal experiences are fine.

    3. For those who train and sell dogs, selling or promoting your services is expressly prohibited.

    In an earlier discussion, someone mentioned that the Barbara Davis Center is preparing to conduct a study on diabetes alert dogs. I look forward to reading the results of their study, for then we will have science.
     
  2. MamaC

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    Thank you, Jeff.
     
  3. Sportsrep

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    Hi, long time reader but very infrequent poster here cos I live in the UK, but always fascinated to follow CWD because you guys are generally several years ahead of us with regard to research, treatment, management protocols etc.

    I know this is an emotional topic, but I'm genuinely interested in it. I have no doubt that animals can sense things before humans can (anecdote: the only time our 15-year-old cat has ever sat on anyone?s lap is when my wife was pregnant; on the second occasion he started doing it before we knew she was pregnant). But my question is ? do service dogs have an ability to detect lows over and above this animal instinct? And if so, how?

    * Oh, my 'qualifications' for being here: T1 for 19 years, both children (13 and 11) T1 for about 6 years. I use MDI, they both pump (much less common this side of the pond)*

    Thanks everyone, and thanks Jeff for such a brilliantly informative site :)
     
  4. Jeff

    Jeff Founder, CWD

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    That is the unanswered question.

    I look forward to reading the results of a real study and am hopeful that the team at the Barbara Davis Center is able to get a study on diabetes alert dogs going.
     
  5. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    If anyone has any information about this study that is supposed to be underway at BDC, could they please post a link, or perhaps the researcher's name, or any other relevant information. I'd like very much to know more about this.
     
  6. frizzyrazzy

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    I see no reason to think that a dog couldn't detect a low. Dogs detect all sorts of things. Can they do it better than the current technology? Can they do it in a reliable manner? these are the questions that I would love to see answered. I just want to reiterate, because somehow my views on this have been very skewed by some, that I don't disagree with the diabetes dog theory. But I do see people spending oodles of money they don't have to get one, and when they do get one, it's not always as great as it was made out to be. Which is why when people talk about detecting BG's I say go for a CGM unless getting a dog was already in your plans as a pet.

    fwiw, our cat generally leaves Ian's room when his bg is very high when otherwise he sleeps with him all night. do i base any treatment on that? no. Do I think he's picking up on something? maybe so. But we could also be seeing a very nice coincidence. My cat also alerts me to the sound of some random items outside the window which I can neither see nor hear..do I say those things are there? No, of course not, but my cat could also be...just a cat.
     
  7. Snowbound

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    Our dog was alerting me to middle of the night highs, lows and weak signals for a couple of months.

    Then we got a new puppy and now she's over tired and sleeps through the CGM alarms.
     
  8. Flutterby

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    Thanks for this thread, Jeff!

    I'd be interested to see scientific data that proves a dog can pick up a low bg 10-15minutes before it actually happens.. Meters are real time, so how is the dog picking up a bg change that is going to happen in 15minutes?


    Frizzy quote because she said just what I was going to say but she said it better. :D
    This goes along with what I was saying in another thread.. the care for a dog is ongoing and needs to be taken into consideration.
     
  9. frizzyrazzy

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    so it was hearing the alarms from the CGM and waking you? (I can see that easily happening)
     
  10. Snowbound

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    yes she was, but now she sleeps through them.
     
  11. Rukio

    Rukio Banned

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    *'s mean see below

    Before we got corgi, I would sleep with my cat Sophie (http://forums.childrenwithdiabetes.com/album.php?albumid=449&pictureid=3129) and she would **wake me up or paw at my grandparents door when I was going low. I too am curious about how the results will turn up, whether we will learn more or discover nothing new. I think the animals do sense something is up with their owners. It could be the body producing a new odor when they are low/high, it could be they sense a personality change, or it could be them watching you do BS enough and knowing that a certain smell=they take a shot=smell goes away. Or certain smell=they eat something=smell goes away. So maybe this new study will answer the questions we all have once and for all. ^^


    *May she rest in peace
    **She shoved her tail in my mouth or her paw if I ignored her

    ~Rukio
     
  12. StillMamamia

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  13. Lee

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    Ok Rukio - so now you have a dog, a parakeet, and a cat that can sense your lows - I believe the dog and the cat - but I am calling you out on the parakeet! :D
     
  14. Rukio

    Rukio Banned

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    Whadda mean calling me on the paraket? :D xD The cat probably disturbed my bird and my bird woke me up. Besides, my birds been dead for a little while now, she died in her sleep (she was sick for a while, like Pretty Boy) :( and...did I mention my bird in this post? =P I think not. xD.
     
  15. Lee

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    No - but you did mention it in another post - about how it would wake you up if you were low! That was an easy post to remember!

    Sorry to hear about your animals though - it is always sad.
     
  16. Nancy in VA

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    Well, my cat doesn't detect lows but he can certainly tell when someone is sick and acts accordingly. And he has always been super protective of the kids in this house - always stood nearby when they were little and sleeping. Very protective.
     
  17. Rukio

    Rukio Banned

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    Oh yeah, I remember that xD. She woke me up a few times, in her...x.x Yeah, I remember that post too, but I wasn't refering to it in this one because my grandparents and I are now assuming I may of been making some weird noise in my sleep maybe. Or maybe my animals are all as weird as me and can sense things xD
     
  18. Lee

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    I was just teasing you :)
     
  19. Rukio

    Rukio Banned

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    =P Today is a very slow day. xD
     
  20. KatieJane'smom

    KatieJane'smom Approved members

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    Last edited: May 26, 2010
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