CBS Los Angeles reports that Tim Mullens is alive today because of his Golden Retriever, Garth. Mullens, who suffers from epileptic seizures, wears an electronic bracelet equipped with a panic button. Garth is trained to press the button when he picks up on a scent that accompanies Mullens’ seizures. One such seizure occurred Monday night when Mullens was alone at a relative’s house. Paramedics were alerted when Garth smartly hit the button. Mullens was transported to Los Robles Hospital in Thousand Oaks , California, and Garth was with him when he woke. Watch the interview with Mullens here.
Unfortunately, dogs like Garth don’t come cheap. The cost assistance dogs like Garth is upwards of $22,000 and isn’t always covered by insurance. Additionally, it’s not only adults who suffer from seizures; children with similar seizures are generally not able to take part in the intense training that a seizure response dog requires. Fortunately, dogs are still available to help these kids through difficult medical procedures. To learn more about “Service Assistance Dogs” click here.
Deep Bond Between Dogs and People
For centuries, people and dogs have shared a deep bond. Recent studies of this bond suggest that there is a hormonal response in both dogs and their human owners that resembles the bond between parents and children. Dogs of all breeds and sizes would bravely defend or help the people in their pack. Some dogs, like Norman the blind Labrador Retriever, will also show nobility and courage to help any human in need. These incredible stories of dogs saving human lives, and many more like them, reveal the loving, brave spirit of the dog and her loyalty to those she loves.
Dog Saves Owner By Calling 911
A Scottsdale man is alive today, thanks to a phone call made to 911 by his 18-month old German shepherd, Buddy. It all happened last Wednesday, when Joe Stalnaker, who lives alone, suffered a seizure. Without blinking an eyelid, Buddy dialled 911 and whimpered and barked on the phone in response to the emergency operator's query about the caller needing assistance.
When the police arrived, they found Buddy barking loudly next to Joe, who had collapsed from the seizure. After spending two days in the hospital, Joe is back home recuperating.
While Buddy is a very smart dog, he has also been trained to do this since he was 8-weeks old. Joe adopted him from Michigan-based Paws with a Cause Organization, which helped train Buddy to pick up the phone and dial 911. The phone is specially programmed, so that Buddy's teeth hit the buttons neccessary to make contact with the operator.
Also Joe's address is flagged, so that emergency personnel know to expect a call from a trained assistance dog.
All these precautions are due to Joe's tendency to have seizures, the result of a head injury he suffered from, ten years ago.
In fact this is not the first time Buddy has had to call 911. He has saved Joe's life twice before, when he had similar attacks. Needless to say, Joe is grateful to have such a great dog around and knows that he could not live independently if he did not have Buddy.
Homeless Man Says Animal Rescue Group Took His Dog, Sues for Her Return
By City News Service • Published May 30, 2020 • Updated on May 30, 2020 at 9:54 pm
A homeless man who lives in a tent in Echo Park is suing a dog rescue organization that he says wrongfully took his longtime canine companion earlier this year and falsely claimed he abandoned the animal.
Elliot Haas' Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit alleges theft, trespass and intentional infliction of emotional distress in the suit filed Friday against Little Love Rescue and its representative, Brittney Littleton. He seeks unspecified damages an injunction preventing the defendants from harming the dog, Luna, or giving the animal to a third party.
Littleton could not be immediately reached.
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Haas lives in a tent off Glendale Boulevard and obtained Luna as his support dog in 2013 from a woman who was looking for someone to adopt the animal, the suit states. Luna suffered from "separation anxiety" and needed to be with a person who had no other dogs and could be with her all day, according to the suit.
Haas suffers from hearing loss, severe depression and anxiety, and having Luna has made him able to perform daily life activities, the suit states.
"Elliot was looking for a companion to help with his anxiety and when he met Luna, it was love at first sight," the suit states.
In January 2019, Luna suffered a seizure which left her back legs paralyzed, the suit states. Haas bought her a wheelchair with his sole source of income from his monthly general relief check, according to the suit.
In early January, Haas started working with a case worker from Homeless Health Care Los Angeles, the suits states. One of the agency's goals is to find permanent housing for their clients and their pets, according to the suit.
On Jan. 24, Haas was sitting in front of his tent when a woman and man offered him a table, which he accepted, the suit states. But when Haas turned around after setting up the table, he saw that the woman had taken Luna and placed her in the car that she and the man had arrived in, the suit states.
When Haas asked why they were taking the dog, they said they were taking the animal to a veterinarian because she appeared sick, the suit states.
"They told Elliot that Luna would be returned to him and told him that if he loved Luna, he would want to know the vet cleared her health," the suit states. "Elliot was left stunned and without skipping a beat, the man and woman got in their car and drove off with Luna."
Haas filed a police report and later learned that the people who took Luna were "friends with Brittney Littleton," the suit states.
Immediately after Luna was taken from Haas, Little Love Rescue posted on its Instagram page, and created a GoFundMe account named, "Save Luna - the Paralyzed Street Dog" to solicit donations, the suit states.
The page had "fabricated claims," alleging Luna was abandoned by her owner, the suit states.
When Haas texted Littleton in February telling her he wanted Luna back, she replied, "Her vet bill is at $6,000 so far if you want to pay it," the suit states.
Haas replied he had care set up for her and that he would email her information proving so, the suit states.
Littleton, meanwhile, raised more than $8,000 through the GoFundMe account and a Venmo mobile payment service from people who wished to cover Luna's veterinary expenses, the suit states.
On Feb. 26, the Housing Equality & Advocacy Resource Team, a public interest law firm, sent Little Love Rescue a letter stating that the organization was helping Haas in getting his pet returned, the suit states.
Not long afterward, Little Love Rescue updated its GoFundMe account and made a plea on Instagram for "legal fees," the suit states.
To date, Luna has still not been returned to Haas, and Littleton continues to raise money for Little Love Rescue, which is unregistered with the attorney general and is not designated a charitable organization, the suit states.
Little Love Rescue's website states that the organization takes in "sick, special needs, neonatal and red-listed animals" and provides them with medical care until they can be adopted. Since its inception, Little Love Rescue "has saved over 900 animals," according to the website.
Pit Bull Service Dog Dies While Saving Owner from Alligator Attack
Robert Lineburger is alive today thanks to his seizure-detection dog, a Pit Bull named Precious.
But it wasn’t her detection of a seizure that saved Lineburger.
Two months ago, as Lineburger and Precious were walking to a restroom at the Port LaBelle Marina in Florida, where they live on a boat, an alligator suddenly lunged out of the water and onto the dock.
Because there are no lights around the marina, Lineburger didn’t see the alligator until it was too late.
Precious “jumped in front of me,” Lineburger told WPTV. “She was roughly 2 to 3 feet away from me when the gator attacked.”
The alligator killed Precious, but Lineburger was unharmed. His hero dog would be alive today if the marina had proper lighting, Lineburger said.
“We have no lighting, which is mandatory code enforcement,” he told WPTV. “Fire extinguishers are mandated by the fire marshal, we have cluttered docks, and at night with no light, you can’t see the clutter. You trip over them, and now you put the alligator problem on top of it, it’s a place for a disaster to happen.”
A neighbor told WPTV he’s seen alligators all around the marina, and has no doubt they’ve been on the dock.
Lineburger wants Glades County code compliance officers to inspect the marina. Nothing will bring back Precious, but Lineburger hopes the tragedy will help others be safe.
“I do not want her death to be in vain,” he told WPTV. “At least let it accomplish something and get some of these violations taken care of.”