Iowa girl receives assistance dog - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Iowa girl receives assistance dog

By Crystal Price - bio | email

IOWA, LA (KPLC) - An Iowa girl will now have special assistance from a new friend thanks to the Canine Assistance organization.

Thirteen year old Khristen Abshire has lived with a rare disease for years that causes a deficiency of an enzyme that helps regulate energy production.

"I drop things a lot and it's hard to open doors, and turn off the lights," said Abshire.

Abshire was first put on the waiting list five years ago when she was diagnosed with the disease.

"I joked about it because I never thought it would really happen," said Abshire.

But just weeks ago Abshire found out she would be the next service dog recipient through the Canine Assistants organization.

"I was so excited I screamed in the house," said Abshire. "It's going to be a friend, not a just a pet but a friend."

The organization provides assistance to people with disabilities at no cost to the recipient.

"All of our dogs learn up to 90 commands," said Sue Harrison, the Director of National Volunteer Services. "Some of them pull wheel chairs, some of them can give them a wallet and they pay at a cash register. It's really life changing."

Abshire will begin training with her new service dog at the Canine Assistants facility in January.

If you know someone who may be in need of a service dog, click a link to the organization's web site to the right.

Copyright 2010 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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