Saturday, October 04, 2008

Dog saves owner when he collapsed with seizures

A dog in Scottsdale is credited with saving his owner's life by calling 911.

``Buddy" is an 18-month-old German Shepherd, trained to be an assistant dog.

He dialed 911 using his teeth when his owner, Joe Stalnaker, had a seizure.

On the 911 tape, Buddy is barking and whimpering as the dispatcher, asks, ``Hello? Can you hear me? Do you need police or paramedics?"

911 Operator Chris Trott had never fielded a call like this before, but he dispatched help, which arrived just over two minutes later.

Stalnaker, who has recovered from the seizure, said he trained ``Buddy" to provide peace-of-mind because of seizures that began following an injury in an Army training mission at Fort Bliss, Texas.
``I basically taught him any time I laid down on the floor to bring me the phone," Stalnaker said. ``He will grab the phone and inevitably one of his teeth is going to hit the speed-dial button and call 911."
Stalnaker said the latest seizure, one of his most severe episodes, marks the third time Buddy has called for help.

He said Buddy gives him the ability to be independent.

``If something happens, I know he knows how to get help... Regardless of where I'm at, or if he's with me, I can count on him."


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