Service dogs act as four-legged guardian angels that make life easier for people who have a wide range of physical, mental or emotional challenges.
Over the weekend, at least three stories cropped up about how special service dogs are to the people they live with.
A special golden retriever service dog named Tuesday had such an impact he became the topic of a book, “Until Tuesday,” authored by Army captain veteran Luis Montalvan.
Montalvan served in two overseas tours that left him with traumatic brain injury and post traumatic stress disorder, according to Fox News.
“Tuesday has been just an unbelievable blessing in that he really helps to alleviate almost all of the symptoms, physical and psychological symptoms that I have as a result of military service and war,” Montalvan told Fox News.
He credits Tuesday with “saving his life.”
Tuesday and Montalvan appeared at a library in Plainfield Township, Mich., to help promote the book, which is a New York Times bestseller, according to his website.
A new friend
Elsewhere, a compassionate community in Topeka, Kan., raised $33,000 to help 11-year-old Alex White get his new service dog, a golden retriever named Redondo.
White lives with spastic paraplegia, a degenerative disease that causes weakness to the lower limbs. He has gotten by without a service dog for more than a year, after his former dog, Hope, was hit and killed by a car, according to WIBW.com.
All of that changed when a classmate, Saige Halseth, launched a fundraising campaign one year ago help her friend.
"He's just my friend and I wanted to help him because I know he would need it for the future," Saige said in March 2013, according to WIBW.com.
Although White was aware of the people working on his behalf, a new service dog came as a complete surprise to 9-year-old Rita Cohen, who lives with diabetes. Cohen was surprised Sunday with a service dog named Lyla following the first Triangle Paws 5K Run/Walk at the WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina, according to WCNT9 News.
Lyla will help alert Cohen if her blood sugar rises or falls too much, according to WCNT9 News.
The fundraiser will help obtain service dogs for other kids with the likes of diabetes, autism and epilepsy.