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DADs...looking to purchasing one for my daughter

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by lohmggcjr, Jun 19, 2014.

  1. lohmggcjr

    lohmggcjr Approved members

    Jun 17, 2014
    I have done a lot of research and we are planning to move forward to providing a DAD for our 7 1/2 daughter. I'm looking to talk with people who have gone through the process. Currently she is on the medtronic pump and dexcom g4. I know that the dogs ability is debatable, but we are also doing this in large part of needing a companion to relieve stress, anxiety She has been dx for 2 years and having a hard time coping. (everyone is different) she is well controlled, however the fact this isn't going away is weighing on her. If you have experience with this, please let me know thanks.
  2. Beach bum

    Beach bum Approved members

    Nov 17, 2005
    Honestly, I'd go with a dog as a companion rather than a DAD. It seems she has good results with the pump/DEx, so why add a dog that needs to be extensively trained (for the D aspect) to the mix? Once the process starts, it is a while before you get one. Whereas with a non DAD dog, you can go to a breeder or the shelter and get one a bit sooner. Choose wisely on the breed, one that won't bring added stress to her (ie. hyper, aggressive). Dogs have been shown to reduce stress in anxiety in owners.
  3. Sarah Maddie's Mom

    Sarah Maddie's Mom Approved members

    Sep 23, 2007
    So the dog will be in addition to the CGM? If that's the plan then that's likely pretty rare. It seems, and I've only known of a few DAD owners, none of them used a cgm.

    Have to agree with Beach Bun. Pets calm us and relieve stress, but just a pet, a dog from the shelter, a dog whose only job is to love her. JMHO
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2014
  4. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    Why waste time and money on a DAD? Just get her a nice dog to play with, cuddle with and love. :)
  5. mmgirls

    mmgirls Approved members

    Nov 28, 2008
    I think that you need to make a choice here, a DAD or a therapy dog.

    The question that I would pose is that your dd is 7.5yrs and unfortunately the lifespan of a dog is limited. I would hate for you to get your dd a DAD and then her come to depend on it for diabetes care and then it pass away right when she/you need it to start her adult life with?

    If you were to get her a therapy dog for companionship/ mental health stress reducer, and that dog were to pass away it would of course be hard but easier to start with another dog?

    I would also think about personal or family therapy to help her with her feeling about Diabetes.
  6. Don

    Don Approved members

    Sep 23, 2010
    I've read about DAD's over the years and my takeaway is it can be a very rewarding experience but be prepared to maintain the training. As other posters have said, you have CGM on board already, so a regular dog can help with the emotional part of things without requiring the extra training.
  7. wearingtaci

    wearingtaci Approved members

    Nov 9, 2012
    The correct term is an emotional support dog. It is a dog that is not trained to perform any disability mitigating task,but is comforting in its presence. Keep in mind that and ESD does not have public access,like a service dog,but it also doesn't have all the continued training of a service dog
  8. moco89

    moco89 Approved members

    Mar 1, 2008
    A DAD is a fully-trained service dog, that gives the user (person with diabetes) public access rights.

    The service dog needs to pass a public access test, in addition to doing a set of tasks required under ADA law. (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UajIMQaAAYI, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVcJsVJo3sA, and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfDh20bCSdM). In order to pass this test, the dog typically has to go through 12-18 months of training.

    You can get the service dog from an "organization" or you can "owner-train" the service dog (using a local trainer qualified to train service dogs). I would suggest owner-training the service dog as a lot of DAD organizations are complete scams. In addition, owner-training the dog allows you to customize training and tailor the training to your child's needs. Either way, you should check out this directory for service dog training (may or may not be legitimate trainers--proceed at your own risk). http://www.petpartners.org/servicedogtrainerdirectory

    Make sure to ask and check references for whichever route you use. If you owner-train, talk to the trainer before getting the potential dog, so that the trainer can find the right dog with the right temperament for public access work. When you get the dog, socialization and exposing your dog to as many situations as possible is *critical* to service dog success. In addition, your dog likely will go through Canine Good Citizen training.

    You should also check out this DVD (also available here and by rental, here) (expensive but totally legitimate--great resource--RENT IT--don't buy it--take notes--it's a short DVD) to see what it takes to get a dog alerting. This also covers night alerts and car alerts.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2014
  9. momoffour

    momoffour Approved members

    May 16, 2011
    Not sure if you have made your decision on not but wanted to weigh in. Dads are alot of work and a great tool if they work. Take in to consideration the added amount of checks a dad will bring and all the training that will be required. A good blog to read is www.blackdogsrule.com along with my story of how we got scammed at http://mysuperheroandd.blogspot.com/
  10. LoveMyHounds

    LoveMyHounds Approved members

    Jan 31, 2012
    Or just a dog? :p
  11. pianoplayer4

    pianoplayer4 Approved members

    Feb 13, 2010
    As a teen/young adult I would say get her a dog as a pet, not a service dog. Mainly because young people hate being different, having a service dog means making your invisible illness very visible. People would stare at her, even if it was not in an unkind way, and that would certainly stress her out more. Having a dog is such a fun thing, and they can become a great friend, but I don't think they should be a service dog unless you really need it.

    Another thing to look into would be training service dogs, I have a friend who does this and they get to take the dog everywhere with them (after a certain point in training) and it is a great thing to do. It would also give you all a picture of what life with a service dog would be like without tying you down to one.
  12. pianoplayer4

    pianoplayer4 Approved members

    Feb 13, 2010
    just wanted to clarify that my friends trained dogs in behavioral stuff, life house training and not freaking out at target. Nothing crazy hard ;-)
  13. DavidN

    DavidN Approved members

    Sep 7, 2012
    This is a bit off topic, and I know this the OP is dated, but anyone thinking about getting a dog at all, never mind a DAD, should think long and hard about it. We got a puppy a few months ago. I like dogs and all, grew up with a bunch of them, but boy if I had it to do over again, I would have nixed this idea from the get go. My son was begging for a dog ("I don't want anything for Christmas or my birthday, just a dog etc ... I'll take great care of him [right!!!]"). But introducing a puppy into a sleep deprived house is not one of my better moves in life.
  14. Ali

    Ali Approved members

    Aug 1, 2006
    To help,if you are not crating your puppy, start doing it now. Get into some type of a puppy training program. If it is too much work for the family consider getting an older all ready trained dog. I realize that your kids will not go for the last idea so try my first two :) Ali
  15. nebby3

    nebby3 Approved members

    Jun 5, 2007
    We got a puppy a little more than a year ago. The first few months were tough. Like having a newborn all over again. But now he is a year old and life is much easier. Puppies go quicker than babies :)
    We were hoping that he would learn to recognize my dd's low bgs. When we remember we give him liver treats when she is low. So far he doesn't seem to have gotten the message.
    The breeder we got him from said her dogs had occasionally been able to tell she was low and even knew she was pregnant before she herself knew. This was all without and formal training.
    Our dog is very concerned whenever anyone is lying on the floor so I am hopeful that if my dd passed out while home alone that he would at least try and revive her.

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