Thursday, September 11, 2008

Angel Dogs Epilepsy Charity Event & Service Dogs Gathering

Last night my human went to a fancy dog function and did not take me along. I have to listen to him tell me about the grand time he had so I can write about it, but he won't let me do first hand reporting. Note to resident human, see how many owners take their dogs with them? Try it, you will like it. Golden Retrievers are the primary dog used for Epilepsy service dog training, although there was a St. Bernard in training as well. A dog can be trained to sense an approaching epileptic seizure and give its owner advance warning. By having warning of on oncoming seizure, the person can take precautions such as medications to prevent the seizure or minimise its effect and move to a safe place so they are not in danger. The dog can prevent the person from harming themselves by falling and even alert others to help. Some dogs have been trained to dial 911 for help on a special phone. Several people attended with their service dogs and gave stirring testimony of the value of having up to an hour of warning before an Epileptic seizure. It allows the person to go about their lives normally rather than being in a constant fear, wondering when the next event will occur. Having a seizure while crossing a street or climbing stairs can be deadly.

The ability to warn of an approaching epilepsy event is tied to the keen sense of smell that Golden Retrievers have. Golden's were bred with Bloodhounds to ensure they have a superior tracking ability, they are bred for disposition and a great sense of smell. A subtle chemical change will give the alert dog a warning., his task is to pass the warning on to the person he is with. The training is not as extensive as it is for a guide dog or a living assistance dog. The need is for good public manners and the ability to react to changes in the person's smell. They train larger sized Golden's in order to provide stable assistance to a person who may be in danger of falling. Its just another thing that Golden's are going to be good at! Below, Gab, short for Gabriel, shows the younger dogs how well behaved Golden Retrievers can be.
This young man was hoping to attend college and needed a dog to allow him to attend classes and move about the campus. One person was gracious enough to give up their trained dog so that he could move forward with his life. Instead of a two year wait, he was able to enroll in college and he made it to class on time. A great sacrifice for a great cause. As a dog, this kind of action helps restore my faith in humans. Below, Piper, the St Bernard takes a break from his heavy work schedule. Below, Piper the St. meets a young dog in training, showing the range of dogs that can be used as Epilepsy Alert dogs. There were several young dogs in training at the party, one was a young St. Bernard, he looked out of place among the retrievers. We may look into helping them with their dog needs, it could be a wonderful way for a Golden Retriever to make a difference in someones life. You may visit their web site at You can donate to help train and provide dogs for this very important service. The use of Epilepsy Alert dogs is just beginning to be recognised for the great service it is, your help is needed to advance this cause.

Mogley G. Retreiver


  1. That is really neat. I had no idea Goldens were bred like Bloodhounds for the abilities you mentioned. interesting. No wonder my boys get taken away by their noses so often...


  2. I liked the article its very interesting and informative. Keep up the great work.