Henry Bagel is a Golden Doodle. I used The Service Training School to help me train Henry to be my personal medical detection dog as I have diabetes type 1.
During the day I can control my sugar levels with diet, exercise, and regular testing. Henry was introduced into my lifestyle to work the Night Shift. However, it would seem he’s never off duty, as he can also remind me that my sugars are out of sorts during the daytime too.
Henry’s journey started back in August 2022 and we completed the training in October 2023. Basic training came easy to Henry and me. We smashed this within a couple of months but to be a service dog in the UK dogs must display certain behaviors in public places and I really wanted us both to master these before we started on the medical stuff.
I knew that I had 2 years to train Henry, but I have also started a new job recently and wanted Henry to attend the office with me. He struggled using a tube for the sniff test so I switched the tube for Christmas baubles! The baubles were from a craft shop and were see-through, they opened and I could place the sample inside. Henry preferred the ball-shaped object as it became more of a game. Eventually, we cracked it and Henry seemed to get the just of the operation after a lot of time and patience.
Since qualifying, Henry has told me that my sugars are out of sorts on a few occasions. He does this by staring at me if I’m seated, or nudging me if I’m standing. He’s not woken me in the night yet, and fingers crossed he keeps having a good night’s rest as this means that I’m also fine during the night.
I found the Service Training School really helpful when I contacted them for any reason, they were also very fast with their responses even though I’m based in the UK. I suggested that they design ‘In Training’ vests for dogs going through this, and they did. I’d like to think that my feedback did this, but I’m not so sure… ha ha ha.
—— To dear Julie, "Yeah, we did "in training" vest based on your feedback!"