BROMSGROVE’s Clent Hills Vets will support ‘superdogs’ who help others by raising funds for two charities.
Medical Detection Dogs trains the four-legged companions to detect the odour of human disease in samples of urine, breath and swabs while bio-detection dogs can sniff the odour of diseases such as cancer, malaria and some neurological diseases.
The charity also trains medical alert assistance dogs, which can detect minute changes in someone’s personal odour triggered by a medical condition. This alerts them to an impending medical event. Conditions can include Type 1 Diabetes, Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (PoTS), Addisons Disease, severe allergies, other disorders and episodes of sudden health deterioration.
Clent Hills’ head vet Alun Edwards first learned about Medical Detection Dogs from client Stephanie Daley and her dog Bounce.
Stephanie’s teenage son, Harrison was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2008 and suffered regular hypos.
He feared going to sleep at night in case he had a hypo and, combined with school bullying, it began to affect his mental health.
Stephanie said: “Bounce came bounding into our lives when we needed him most.
“His ability to detect hypos 20 minutes before they occurred has helped Harrison grow in confidence and better manage his condition.”
Therapy Dogs Nationwide – the other cause Clent Hills is supporting – have very calm and gentle-natured dogs, providing Animal Assisted Therapies (AAT).
The organisation works with volunteers and their dogs to provide therapeutic visits to schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, care homes, hospices and prisons.
The visits can improve people’s general health and wellbeing, increase confidence levels, improve and control movement, and enhance communication skills.
The vets have been aware of the charity for several years through clients Jackie and Keith Medler and their therapy dogs Merryn and Orla.
Every week Jackie takes Merryn to visit Holywell Primary School in Rubery and Chadsgrove School in Bromsgrove, to help younger children with their reading and confidence levels.
Clent Hills Vets will be organising fund-raising activities for both causes which rely solely on donations.
And they want to hear – via email to firstname.lastname@example.org – people’s personal experiences of being helped by a medical detection or therapy dog.