This is a bit of a rambling post, which really should not surprise you. It is the beginning of my chronicle of our search to find a service dog for our 8 year-old daughter. Allow me to introduce her. She has Autism, mild cerebral palsy, Familial Mediterranean Fever Syndrome and multiple life-threatening food allergies. She is a pediatric stroke survivor. She is diagnosed with Rapid Cycling Mood Disorder and is developmentally delayed. She has such a big heart, and is so loving that she is remembered by all those who cross her path. She remembers all those she meets. She has meltdowns. Not little temper tantrums, or even big temper tantrums. She EXPLODES! She reaches that critical point so quickly that there is often little that we can do but sit back and watch, at least until her grandmother’s dog intervened. The process was interrupted, redirected and she calmed. She was still upset but did not reach the apex that she normally reaches. That planted the seed.
My wife and I began searching for Service Dog Trainers/Training Organizations, especially looking for ones specializing in training dogs for people on the Autism Spectrum. We began our search where so many turn for information – Google. I am not going to take anything away from our favorite search engine; instead, maybe we didn’t properly utilize it. We located an organization with significantly lower fees than the majority of the others. They just so happened to be one of the top hits when we searched for “autism service animals” This post is the beginning of our story dealing with this organization. I wish the story were different…I cannot change what has happened but we are determined to make something good come from this.
I intend to fully document the journey using “Frustration Abounds” in each post title concerning this subject. I will spread it out to make it a little easier to take it – there is a lot. If you can’t wait and want more information – then leave me a comment and I will do my best to get back to you.