Meet our Clients that are waiting for a Service Dog.
Jacinda Marko shares many qualities with every other typical 12 year old girl: loves her kitty, is crazy for horses, spends hours giggling with her friends. What sets her apart, however, is epilepsy. For over 5 years, Jacinda and her mom & sisters, have maintained a high state of readiness in case Jacinda has another seizure. Her teachers and school mates are aware and mostly kind, but there is still teasing and mocking that accentuates less positive aspects of Jacinda’s “uniqueness”. Occasionally, a seizure results in real injury or life threatening situations.
Jacinda is looking forward to receiving a service dog that will respond to her seizures. We are preparing a dog to ATTEND Jacinda during her seizures so she feels less vulnerable until she recovers, to GET HELP from mom or older sisters when seizures strike at home; and to BRACE in response to Jacinda’s pre-seizure verbal cue, “Hold Me”, and again as she regains her composure.
Jacinda has adapted and adjusted to the unpredictability of life with epilepsy. She is looking forward to the security and dependability of a service dog to walk this path with as she grows in independence.
Carter will be 10 this year and is entering the 4th grade. He was born with Down Syndrome and was later diagnosed with ADHD and anxiety disorder. He lives with his parents and 3 siblings in Phoenix, AZ.
Carter hopes to join the Special Olympics Golf Team and is returning to therapeutic horseback riding.
Golf is a huge priority in Carter’s life. He practices between 3-4 hours a day in the back yard and on the golf course on the weekends. He really enjoys watching PGA tour highlights.
Some other hobbies of Carter’s include listening to music, dancing, going to In N Out, swimming, wrestling, playing basketball with his siblings, and hanging out with his extended family.
Carter would greatly benefit from a service dog that will serve as a calm, grounding point of contact for him. A service dog for Carter would also be a great opportunity for him to further develop social skills, communication skills, and responsibility.
In 2016, Justice Walsh was a typical 18 year old with plans. He was set to attend college and study Art & Music. He loved playing guitar. In a flash, everything changed. Justice was a passenger in a vehicle struck by a drunk driver. He sustained serious head injuries that radically altered his plans forever. The doctors’ prognosis was grim, but they could not quantify Justice’s fighting spirit. Despite multiple surgeries and complications, Justice not only survived, he re-learned to talk, eat, walk (with assistance); he relies on a wheelchair for mobility. He continues to enjoy his music and be creative.
His mom calls him “Ironman” for his courage & determination, not to mention the battery pack in his chest to help control seizures.
“I would say what I admire most in Justice is his determination; he never gives up. He has such a positive attitude and cheers people up wherever he goes and warm people’s hearts. The doctors gave him only 3% chance of survival and yet he continues to amaze them and prove them wrong.”
~ Angela Sullivan, Justice’s mom
A service dog for Justice will help him overcome his partial paralysis and loss of mobility. Justice still has plans and the determination to make them happen.