SERVICE DOG FOR LUKE

Many of you know that our 9 year old son Luke is on the Autism spectrum. The road with an autistic kid is rough. It is painful to watch him struggle socially and heartbreaking for me to answer him when he asks why no one invites him over to play. Everyday life situations are huge battles with him, causing him great stress and anxiety. Many times he runs away to escape the situation putting him in potential danger.

 

A couple of months ago, I began researching places that train dogs specifically to assist children with autism. These dogs are trained to sense the anxiety coming on and to help defuse the common meltdowns that autistic children experience before they explode. They are taught to track and are even tethered to the child who runs off. When a child is stuck in a repetitive behavior, the dog is taught to redirect them. They stay in the child's bed with them at night so the child feels secure enough to stay in their own bed. And of course, since it is a service dog, it is that constant companion that gives them a sense of security because it goes with them everywhere.

 

Needless to say, this kind of dog is expensive. After researching, I found a reasonably price facility that is only 2 hours away. Back in September, we were able to go there, meet the staff and a couple of dogs being trained for other families. Luke loved it and did great interacting with the dogs. He now talks often of what he will do when he gets his service dog. We really believe that this would be a huge turning point for Luke. To have a best friend by his side to help him through his struggles in life would be such a blessing to him and our family.

 

It is roughly a 2 year process. This time period includes being on the waiting list, matched with the right dog that bonds with the child and then training the dog for that child's specific needs. The trainer even come to the child's house and school to train the dog there!

 

The total cost is $9,900 (which is a good price considering I saw another organization that was charging $13,000!). The first 25% ($ 2,475) is due when the application is turned in and we are put on the waiting list. The next 25% ($ 2,475) is due when the child is matched with the dog and it begins its training. The final 50% ($ 4,950) is due when the dog is delivered, usually 4-6 months after being matched with the child.

 

This has not been an easy decision for our family to make and it's going to be even more difficult moving forward in the process financially.  Would you please consider being a part of helping Luke get his best friend? Click the donate button and enter any amount you would like to give. Every little bit helps and would mean so much to our family.  We will keep you posted on the process. 

 

If you would like to learn more about the organization, click HERE to check out their website.  There are great written and video testimonials on the site.

  • Bettye Sutphin 
    • $50 
    • 91 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 93 mos
  • Cathy Clark 
    • $20 
    • 94 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $3,500 
    • 94 mos
  • Gregg Watts 
    • $50 
    • 94 mos
See all

Organizer

Stacey Baker 
Organizer
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