February 2022 Newsletter

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Medical Alert Update

Sal – ALHD’s first Medical

Alert Dog Sal recently entered full-time training and is settling in nicely at ALHD.

It has been a smooth transition into full-time training for Sal because she was already so familiar with the place. Sal has started going on more advanced outings such as Norwood Parade and Glen Osmond Road where there is traffic noise as well as shop fronts and people. Sal went inside a shop for the first time this week, which can be very daunting for a dog as there are lots of new sights, smells and sounds inside – a sensory overload! The difficulty of these outings will slowly be increased to build up her confidence in all situations until she is comfortable walking through big shopping Malls and going on public transport.

She will now begin the advance stages of her Diabetic Alert training . During the puppy stages of scent training, Sal learnt to alert to the scent of a low BGL (blood glucose level) which presents an immediate danger for people with Type 1 Diabetes. She is now learning to recognise the scent of a high BGL as well. This means that Sal will be able to help her recipient remain within their target BGL range which will lower the risk of Type 1 Diabetes related health complications later in life.

Sal will also learn some other tasks which will help her recipient manage their condition and assist in the case of an emergency. She will learn to retrieve a Hypokit (case containing sugar sources) from its designated spot, the “get help” command where she will locate another person for assistance, a bark alert in an emergency and to press a button on an emergency device. For more information on the program please contact Laura at laura@lionshearingdogs.com.au.