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hypo-detecting dogs

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Boo, Dec 11, 2008.

  1. Boo

    Boo Approved members

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    I know this has been brought up before, but a quick search of threads didn't really find me what I was looking for.

    We're getting a puppy for Christmas (shhh! ;)). It's just a mutt, and just intended as a family pet, not as a "service dog", show dog, therapy dog, etc. But of course, as a mother of a type 1 diabetic, my mind keeps going to the "what if" scenarios. Does anyone out there have a service dog or a family pet that senses the hypos? If so, how do they alert you? How do you reinforce the behavior? Any training tips or suggestions? Since we will be getting the dog as a young pup, I'm pretty willing to try anything reasonable since we'll be doing the basic training anyways.

    It would just be a nice added bonus if it could work, but again that is not the purpose of getting the dog by any means!
     
  2. sam1nat2

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    have the dog spend a lot of time with your son--that's what the vet told us. I don't think our dogs have detected hypos, but they do like to sleep on Sam's bed.

    Congrats on a cool Christmas gift!!
     
  3. Boo

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    Just bumping this back up in case anyone new is out there now with some suggestions!
     
  4. WendyTT

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    I do not have any words of wisdom but I posted this exact same scenario question about two months ago or so....we were getting a yellow lab puppy just as a pet with no intention of training it but hoping there may be some things we could do to "encourage" the puppy along the way. I got a number of good responses so if you did a search under my id "wendytt" you would find my post and could read those responses. Good luck.....dogs are fantastic but if one would or could detect a hypo in my daughter, that is a HUGE added bonus!
     
  5. Mistync991

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    im not sure what to tell you about training but we got a dog about 7 months or so before my daughter was dx and prior to dx she would sleep with us and was more "our" dog but around the time she got dx we started noticing that she always slept with my daughter now and she still does its like she watches over her we dont really have much of a problem with lowes expecially at night but it would be interesting to see if the dog did tell us somehow ...she is deffinatly "her" dog now
     
  6. KatieJane

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    I have a diabetic alert dog

    I have a diabetic alert dog. It goes with me everywhere - goes to school with me, movies, sleepovers, everywhere I go. Catches changes in my bg's about 20 minutes before it shows up on my meter.

    You can teach a dog to do whatever alert you want it to do. My dog licks me. I didn't want it barking because of going to school with me.

    You can learn more about diabetic alert dogs on my website www.lildotspot.com I have links on there to trainers & other websites that are very informative. One of the sites lists feedback on different trainers around the country & also a discussion about self-training.

    I hope your new puppy is great!!
    Love,
    Katie Jane Brashier,
    Your friendly, neighborhood diabetic
     
  7. flabby_abi

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    I have a diabetic alert dog as well.

    My dog (mr. Darcy) alerts by placing a bringsel in his mouth and sitting in front of me. He goes from me to my mom to my dad with the bringsel. If i am low Darcy ALSO paws my leg. However, if i am high he simply sits in front of me with the bringsel in his mouth.(a bringsel is an item used by search and rescue teams. it hangs from my belt loop when we are in a public place. but at home i have them in various rooms).

    For more info about my dog go to: www.gr8ful1.org
     
  8. KatieJane

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    Thanks, Abi. I'd like to try the bringsel with my dog. Does it release from your belt or does Darcy just tug on it?

    I need to use alerts that will work at school. Right now my dog either licks for a high or paws gently for a low. I think I like the idea of a bringsel if he can take it to other people if I'm in real trouble & need help. Maybe I could print "go help Katie Jane" on the bringsel.

    Love,
    Katie Jane Brashier,
    Your friendly, neighborhood diabetic
     
  9. joyfulheart

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    We have a mutt (terrier mix that looks like benji). She isn't trained at all, but has really bonded with the kids. When ANY of them are sick, she doesn't leave their side. When one has a fever, she whines. When one is about to throw up, she barks and runs (she has been thrown up on before, LOL).

    We've never had diabetes issues bad enough to freak out the dog but it would be interesting.
     
  10. Abby-Dabby-Doo

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    Boo~
    You can also PM Ivan's Mom- she's spoke about it quite a bit on the forums.
     
  11. nobodybutjustme

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    ha ha about 'go help katie jane'!! you are too funny. . .
    the bringsels that abi uses are homemade. I made them out of heavy duty canvas/ duck cloth in bright colors. I used a plastic clip like i use on pump packs (www.pumppacks.org). The clip is attached to the bringsel with a piece of elastic. So, Abi can clip it to her waist and he can reach up and grab it.
    when we are at home, there are bringsels here and there all around the house. He will smell 'that smell' and then you can see him begin to pace and search for a bringsel to bring us. He takes it to abi and sits, he comes to me and sits and keeps going back and forth until I follow him to Abi. Then, we go together to the spot in the kitchen where we keep her meter and LOGBOOK (hint, hint, katie jane!!!) He does a "watch me" while Abi does all that stuff. Then, his reward is a certain TOY that I keep on top of the frig. As soon as "his job' is done, he goes to the frig, sits and stares up at the top of it. It is a funny thing to see.
    I'd like to find clips that are 'break away' but have not yet. At home, sometimes I stick one in my back pocket and he can just take it out of my pocket when he wants to tell me something.
    i think it's a great alert for school.
    i miss you!!
     
  12. flabby_abi

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    when we are at home darcy brings the bringsel to each member of my family. but when we are in public he just tugs on it. after i test and treat i un-hook the bringsel and give it to darcy and THEN we go find mom. when darcy gets a little bigger i am going to hang it on his collar then he could pick it up and take it wherever he needs to.
     

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