Sunday February 25th 2018

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Support Dogs




A unit on an industrial estate in Brightside Lane, Sheffield may seem an unlikely spot for a charity which exists to train dogs to improve the lives of people with epilepsy, physical disability and children with autism. But it is the home of Support Dogs and from this small unit we train dogs to work with families throughout the whole of the UK.

Support Dogs is the only organisation in the UK to train Seizure Alert Dogs. They can give the owner up to 45 minutes warning of an attack. We are currently training the first ever seizure response dog for a child. If the child has a seizure it will fetch the parents – even in the middle of the night.

Our Disability Assistance Dogs are trained to carry out tasks tailored to their owner’s needs, such as:

  • Raising the alarm
  • Operating control buttons
  • Loading and unloading the washing machine

In 2008 we began training Autism Assistance Dogs to provide both parents and child with a degree of predictability in social settings. There is a desperate need for these dogs – we had over 400 applications for one animal – dog, but the statistics don’t tell the full human story. Here are the words of Paula Craik whose son, Joe, received Lacey the first A.A. dog we trained:

“Previously people were very unlikely to communicate with Joe because he appeared very unapproachable, but now people often stop and ask him his dog’s name. Lacey has transformed his life in innumerable ways. He now seldom experiences fear and frustration, when away from home, so temper tantrums are now a rarity. Before Lacey he didn’t know the word mum or what it meant.”

Find out more about us at:

Support Dogs help us: won’t you help them?


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