RANCHO CORDOVA (CBS13) – It’s a lifelong, chronic disease that can occur at any age and effects millions of people worldwide.
But now trainers at the Local Bark in Rancho Cordova are hoping their four-legged friends can help those suffering from Type 1 diabetes.READ MORE: Large Fight At Park In Natomas Leaves 1 Man Dead
These dogs have been specially trained to detect the scent on a swab to help save people.
Fifteen-month-old black lab Halle was given up by her owners, but she got a new lead on life when trainers at the Local Bark rescued her in the hopes that one day, she’ll return the favor.
“These dogs are trained to say hey get up, sometimes out of sleep, or get off the chair and get some glucose,” said Kristin Minnie, owner of Local Bark.
These diabetic alert dogs have to meet requirements before being accepted by the center, and then they begin their fully immersed training.READ MORE: Palo Alto Woman Alexandra Souverneva Accused Of Starting Fawn Fire In Shasta County
The scent of a diabetic’s saliva taken during low sugar is placed on the swab, dropped into a buck on the spin wheel and “once they scent or smell the tin in the bucket, they will alert, which means to paw and lets us know they have the right one,” Minnie said.
The bucket is eventually replaced by a human, where the dog paws at their owner to alert them to a change in blood sugar levels.
And with more than 25 million people suffering from diabetes, dog proves once again to be man’s best friend.
“We have a little dog now who’s in training to go to a 7-year-old boy, and I have a 7-year-old boy,” Minnie said. “So it does, it touches our heart to be able to help people who are do desperate.”
It takes about six to eight months of training.
These service dogs can cost between $5,000 to $10,000 and they are not covered under health insurance.