Training For A Diabetic Alert Dog in Virginia

Diabetic Alert Dog Virginia


Those diagnosed with type 1 diabetes must constantly check glucose levels to check for levels that are too high or too low, as these situations can cause terrible health complications. If they are not aware of these levels that can fluctuate tremendously throughout the day they could faint, experience a seizure, go into a coma or even die. One way to help those living with type 1 diabetes is to have a Diabetic Alert Dog. These dogs are specially trained to alert a diabetic person of high or low glucose levels so that the person can take an insulin shot or eat something high in sugar, etc. There are a number of ways to obtain this special type of dog. Training is extensive.

How they are trained? High and low glucose levels are associated with specific smells that humans can’t detect. Dogs, with their especially keen sense of smell, can be trained to recognize the smells of low and high glucose levels. They are trained through a series of reward systems. Sweat or saliva samples exhibiting these levels are exposed to the dog, and then the dog is rewarded for smelling it with a treat. Then, further training is given so that the dog learns how to alert the diabetic. This could mean placing a paw on their knee, etc. This would indicate to the diabetic that he/she should check their blood sugar and take the necessary action to regulate glucose levels. This gives the person a sense of safety and security while going about their daily life as the most severe cases of dangerous glucose fluctuations can be avoided through early detection by the diabetic alert dog.

Trainer or Program: There are several organizations that offer dogs already trained to be purchased. Usually there is a stage in the program where the diabetic would need to send samples of their specific scents for the dog to train with before being released. A trainer may also be sent with the dog for a few days to help both the dog and owner adapt. Another option is to purchase a dog that is ideal for the job and to hire a trainer such us Off Leash K9 Training to train the dog to be a diabetic alert dog at home.

Skills: The dogs are trained in a number of skills beyond detecting low and high blood glucose levels. Diabetic alert dogs may also be trained to get assistance from a third party, retrieve medication, food, a test kit, or dial 911 using a special device. These abilities can be life-saving for the dog’s owner. As diabetic alert dogs must accompany their owners everywhere and by law are permitted everywhere the owner needs to go, these dogs are also trained in public access and have these certifications. This way dogs are able to accompany their owners without disturbing in places like schools, restaurants, doctor’s offices, etc.

If you are interested in getting your dog trained to be a diabetic alert dog, contact Off Leash K9 Training today! or 888-413-0896 or [email protected]

-Nick White
Off Leash K9 Training

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