A TWO-YEAR-OLD Labrador named Freddie helps rescue his owner every single day, despite the fact he’s not a trained service dog.
Lucy Brown was diagnosed earlier this year with non-epileptic attack disorder (NEAD), a condition causing the brain to randomly blackout and the sufferer to lose control of their limbs.
The 20-year-old can suffer up to 100 seizures a day, and as a result of her diagnosis Lucy had to give up her job and leave the house she had been sharing with her boyfriend to move back in with her parents, so they could take care of her whenever she experienced a seizure.
However when her parents are at work, the former care worker relies on her faithful dog, Freddie, to keep an eye on her.
The two-year-old Labrador Freddie acts as her safety net – despite not being a trained seizure dog. He licks and paws at her until she comes back around.
Many epilepsy patients have ‘seizure dogs’, which have been trained to respond to a seizure.
They can be trained to do a variety of tasks, including barking to alert carers when a seizure occurs and lying next to sufferers to prevent injury.
Some dogs are taught to put their body between the seizing individual and the floor to break their fall, while others learn to activate an alarm.
Freddie without any training instinctively goes to protect his human.
The 20-year-old, from Warrington, Cheshire, described how the pup comes to her aid, according to the Daily Mail Lucy said:
“I can’t remember the first time he helped. But, from what I’ve been told, he just ran straight over to me, starting licking my face and cuddled his body into me.
He’s the main reason I moved back home. He will help me when I’m on my own. He’s my dog – I got him as a puppy. He’s always by my side and will just lie with me.
He does what seizure dogs do – he licks me and paws me to bring me round but has never had any training.”
Lucy had suffered mild seizures in her mid-teens, and although they disappeared as she got older they returned at the beginning of this year, becoming more severe and frequent.
Tests diagnosed Lucy with NEAD. The attacks look like epileptic seizures, but they are not caused by electrical activity in the brain.
Following her diagnosis, Lucy experienced depression and drifted apart from many of her closest friends. She described her life as ‘very lonely’, admitting she doesn’t do much and can’t even have a bath alone because of the frequency of her seizures. In February, when the attacks were most sever, Lucy was suffering some 100 seizures a day. According to the Mail, the attacks are now about ten a day.
Lucy reports she lives in constant fear of an attack striking, though she is holding out hope the seizures may vanish like they did in her teens.
“I might have to live with [NEAD] for the rest of my life. But it could also stop tomorrow.” She was stated to say.
A dog is a man’s best friend, in Lucy’s case, Freddie is that and much more.