Charity Partner: Guide Dog Users Inc.
Chara (Waynesboro, VA) - Chara was originally trained as a signal service dog. However, due to a work accident in 2008, her handler developed a neurological condition known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy type II with Dystonia. Thanks to the bond between handler and dog, Chara has trained herself to depict impending myoclonic dystonic attacks (15-45 minutes before episodes). This newfound “alerting” skill was formed not just with her handler. Two weeks after her handler gave birth to her son, he developed a severe cold. Unknown to his mom (who is also hearing impaired), he stopped breathing. Chara alerted her that something was terribly wrong and if it was not for her quick response and love for her newest pack member, the boy would have succumbed to a condition known as SIDS. Chara has gone beyond her original skills of hearing dog and is now considered by her family to be their furry guardian angel who watches over everyone and everything.
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