STORIES

Stories about Pawsitivity service dogs and how they help.

Stories

These stories will melt your heart.

Here are some of the stories about Pawsitivity service dogs, as documented in our independent, third-party Impact Evaluation.

  • “After my husband’s accident, he couldn’t even go out the front door. With the help of his service dog, he gained the confidence to be able to do some of the things that he desired to do. It was like he blossomed back to life. His whole demeanor improved. He wasn’t so scared of life itself.”
  • “My son had become so traumatized by the hospital that he wouldn’t leave the house. He had medical PTSD. We had to stop all his therapies. It is almost impossible to put into words what having our service dog means. He goes to every hospital visit with my son. My son is still afraid but as long as his dog is with him it is tolerable, and we are able to get the medical stuff done for him.”
  • “My son never had a playdate before we had our service dog. He never had friends. He was afraid of kids his own age. Honestly, they were a little afraid of him, too. I bring the dog to school and talk to his class. Now, kids want to come over to our house so that they can pet the dog when he’s now working.”
  • “I’ve never come across anything tougher in my life than being a full-time caregiver. My time was being consumed. I could not have kept my job without the service dog. The dog allowed me the freedom to continue with the things that were in my life before the diagnosis.”
  • “My other children had to take a back seat to the child that was in the most need. It was stealing their childhood. Having the service dog with my son, it means my other children can be kids. They don’t have to bear the responsibility of making sure their brother is safe.”
  • “My family can go and do things we weren’t doing before. Now we fly on airplanes three times a year. Without our service dog, my family would be unable to stay together when we travel. My husband and I would be living separate lives. He would be taking one child and I’d be taking the other.”
  • “My son taught his service dog to hug. She will do that to anybody who needs it. For my other kids, the dog is a way they can calm down when they are upset. They all do that. She definitely has been a comfort for my other kids and myself as well.”
  • “Our service dog is our guardian angel. My son had a seizure in the middle of the night. His service dog came to get my husband and I. Previously, he had had a seizure where he almost choked and died. So those are things I worry about. Our service dog alleviates the pressure [of monitoring] from me.”

More quotes:

  • “Having a service dog’s unconditional love - a bond that never goes or redirects or gets mad at you – is huge.”
  • “Our service dog is the best tool we’ve ever had.”
  • “I am most proud of the relationship that my son has with his dog. The affection and sense of responsibility that he has. It says a lot about his Inner life. We can get glimpses of his feelings and his thoughts by how they interact. That is super valuable to me.”
  • “When my other child is having a bad day, my son will let his service dog sleep with her. He’s thinking about someone else, which he wouldn’t have done before. He’s recognizing that someone is struggling. He knows his dog helps him so he’s going to let the dog sleep with his sibling. Those are profound changes from where he was.”
  • “The service dog gives me an overall sense of security and independence. I am not as afraid to go into a public area where I can be vulnerable.”
  • “I go out of the house more with my son. We have access to a wider variety of activities. We go swimming at the beach. Our service dog can get right out there. That’s the best part because not only does my son bolt on land, he bolts on water!”
  • “I never thought my son was going to go to school. We tried and it was so traumatic. We gave up. I didn’t expect so much change when we got our service dog. My son thrived in school. I never thought that was going to happen. That was big for me, to get a piece back that I didn’t think would happen.”
  • “If my son is having a bad day, we can tell him to go hug the dog. Before, his emotions would get bigger and bigger and bigger and explode. We don’t have that anymore. He is able to control himself more.”
  • “At age 14, my son still wanted to sleep with us. He had huge separation anxiety. When he got his service dog, he didn’t sleep with us anymore. He sleeps with his dog. That’s huge that he can do that. It shows me that he can connect with someone else.”
  • “Our service dog elicits a lot of language from my son. You could see this steadily increase over time. As his language came back, she helped by drawing it out.”
  • “When we take our service dog out in public, it’s a great way for my son to engage. He meets other kids and adults because everyone loves the dog. My son wants people to pet his dog. It’s his social bridge. At school in the morning, he has a crowd around him.”
  • “The level of pride my son has in the dog is amazing. He loves her and it’s okay that he is different. He is special because he has the dog.”
  • “I felt immensely proud of my son when he told me that he had opened up about autism to some of his friends and told them the dog was his service dog. It showed his self-acceptance. He wasn’t ashamed or afraid. He could show his true self.”
  • “We deal with a lot of things in public that if we didn’t have a service dog, people would think we have a really naughty kid and should be handling our kid better. Having this dog shows people that we do have a handicap and it’s okay.”
  • “The dog picked up a lot of care I was giving. [Before,] I was always there beside him. I was there to help him soothe—help him through his episodes. The dog took my place for those things.”
  • “I know there’s another pair of eyes on my son no matter where I am in the house. That really helps me survive and not worry so much.”