Bring Liam's Alert Dog Home

$10,610 of $14,000 goal

Raised by 84 people in 39 months
In May 2015 our little Scrappy, aka Liam, was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Living with T1D can be manageable, but never easy. Surprisingly, only 5% of diabetics are Type 1, which is an autoimmune disease that pretty much causes you to walk around with a non functioning pancreas. T1 doesn't take breaks, nor does it go away. Every meal or period of physical activity requires finger sticks, math, and administering insulin or giving carbs to counteract a dropping blood sugar. This disease is so baffling because the body's needs change every day and unfortunately the medicine (insulin) which Liam requires to stay alive is also very deadly. Not finishing his sandwich, incorrectly counting carbs, running around on the playground, and sleeping are all potentially deadly. Sounds extreme doesn't it? But it's our reality.


Liam was fortunate enough to get an insulin pump and CGM (continuous glucose monitor) shortly after his diagnosis, however some days his CGM can't keep up with him because he drops so quickly (we are talking going from 100 to 50 in just minutes). We work really hard to keep Liam from the harsh reality that is diabetes, and keep his life as normal as possible, but when you have to come inside, drink juice, and rest, while all of your friends are playing outside you can't help but feel different. 




This is where a DAD or Diabetic Alert Dog comes in! Dogs can sense a rapidly dropping or rising blood sugar about 15-20 minutes before a CGM. Jamie, the owner of Heads Up Hounds in Nebraska  ( www.headsuphounds.com ), takes saving lives seriously... She believes that by training rescue dogs, potentially two lives are saved. As Liam grows older and gains independence, Ross and I can't always be there... I mean, quite frankly, I don't want to go to his sleepovers! My hope is that Liam grow independent and learn to manage his diabetes, but never feel alone with his giant beast of a disease. 


We need your help!!!  The first step is raising $1500, which gets Liam on the waitlist and in line to receive a dog. The remaining is due when we actually travel to Nebraska to pick up and train with Jamie and Liam's dog (usually about 10-12 months after placed on waitlist). All funds raised will go directly to Heads Up Hounds. Any funds raised over our goal will go to sales tax, our travel expenses to NE, and miscellaneous supplies needed to get his dog setteled next year. 

On average, 11 years are shaved off a T1's life.... it can be more or less depending on how well they manage their disease. Even scarier... 5%  of T1's will die while asleep at night; likely from hypoglycemia. Help us add another layer of safety for Liam, and minimize the complications of this awful disease. 

One act of generosity... two lives saved!

Gratitude and Love!
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One week from today we will be flying west to pick up Scout! Time has flown and the thought of meeting her is surreal. We are still receiving donations as we have a few miscellaneous items to purchase, travel expenses, as well as insurance. Since Scout is a true service dog/working dog this it's extra important she maintain optimal health. We look forward to sharing Scout's journey with all the generous donors and hearts!
Best,
Ashley
Scout watching a movie at the theater, intently.
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We've got an exciting update to share! Liam's service dog has officially begun training with Heads Up Hounds in Nebraska. Scout was found as a stray and brought to a kill shelter about a month ago, where her days were numbered and she would have been euthanized. Thankfully, her stay there was brief and she was then rescued by a no-kill shelter from which she was adopted by the Cooks at HUH for evaluation! She passed her "trainability" and behavior tests and will soon be receiving Liam's saliva samples to continue her alert training with. She has to complete obedience, service, and alert trainings to be signed off and ready to work! Throughout this process she lives with a family of 4 (two kids), and numerous other dogs and feline friends in their Omaha home.

Diabetes has not gotten any easier. It still continues to baffle us daily with its insidious "catch me if you can" taunting. It's like constantly trying to hit a moving target. Let's not forget starting kindergarten and a few good colds thrown in there.... it's been a crazy few months.

.... So back to Scoutie girl! Right now it looks like we will be heading to Nebraska in February or March to train for 5 days and then bring her home. All 4 of us will be flying and spending 4 nights at a hotel which accommodates HUH for trainings. Unfortunately, the nature of the business is that you only get 3 weeks notice for a handoff date (and then also have to cross your fingers for cooperative weather!)

This is where we are looking to rally up a few more donations to help us with travel expenses. We were extremely fortunate to raise enough funds to pay for Liam's alert dog but now it's almost time to bring her home! Any funds you're willing to donate to help us pick Liam's girl would be beyond helpful!

Thank you to all those who have previously donated. Know that you're truly saving two lives!

With a grateful heart,
Ashley, Ross, Liam, and Colby.... and Scout
Hi there Scout!
Fill your cup up with light and love
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What a whirlwind the past 24 hours has been! We never in our wildest dreams imagined we would ever meet our goal, never mind surpass it. With that being said, we do plan to use any additional donations to compensate for the fees that gofundme deducts. Once we "truly" meet our goal we will continue to accept donations, however have decided to pay it forward and bless another family in need of a dog from Heads Up Hounds.

Our family has had so many challenges over the past years between Colby's growth hormone and ACTH deficiency, Liam's t1d, then Ross's adult onset t1d recently, and myself with positive antibodies making me "high risk" for developing t1 in the next 5 years. (The doc's all say that if we told anyone about our family's endocrine issues they'd think we were crazy! It's really unbelievable.) Medical expenses have really racked up this past year and to know, with complete confidence, that we can bring Liam's alert dog home in the future is a huge weight lifted! Thank yous don't seem adequate to express our gratitude!

With a grateful heart,
Ashley
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Just a quick update... campaign has been quiet lately but we have lots of fun stuff in the works!

Liam celebrated his 1 year diaversary (yes, that's a real thing in the D community) last week on May 14th. Crazy how far we've all come over the past year... the families we've met, the friends we've made, the strangers and loved ones we've been able to educate.

Words can not express the gratitude to all those that have donated; financially or with time.... even those who have said they aren't in a position to donate money... but acknowledge and converse about Liam's day to day life with Type 1 .

With a full heart,
Ashley
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$10,610 of $14,000 goal

Raised by 84 people in 39 months
Created March 12, 2016
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HB
$50
Heather Bridges
28 months ago
LP
$25
Liz Porter
28 months ago
ED
$50
Erin Dupee
29 months ago
$50
Katrice Kelley
29 months ago

Good luck Liam!! Praying for you all xo

LM
$25
LAURIE MARTIN
30 months ago

can't wait to see pics of Liam with his new best furfriend!

$25
Carrie Biggar
30 months ago
$25
Tania Beliveau
30 months ago

Wishing you success!!!

KO
$10
Karen Ogar
30 months ago
$100
Lindsay Dorfman
30 months ago
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