Emily is 15 years old. She is a freshman in High School. Emily looks like all other teenagers, except she has Tourette Syndrome (TS).
Casey is a service dog currently being trained to help Emily.
Tourette Syndrome is a neurobiological disorder that is characterized by tics. Tics are involuntary, rapid, sudden movements and/or vocal outbursts that occur repeatedly. Motor tics can be simple like blinking or shoulder shrugging to complex such as head banging, rolling eyes or pinching. People with TS also often have anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and attention deficit disorder.
Emily has the whole package. She has struggled for years to overcome her TS and be successful in school and live the life of a "normal" teenager. She has tried all types of medications and therapies to control her Tourettes. Unfortunately, her Tourettes sometimes gets the best of her.
A service dog gives Emily a new chance. It would let her do things she couldn't otherwise do - go to crowded places without having a panic attack, help control her tics so she doesn't physically hurt herself, and calm her anxiety so she can just be a normal teen.
Service dogs require extensive training especially so they can learn to help with the tics and not be afraid of them (like people often are). This training is costly ($32,000) and difficult. Few groups will take this on. Thanks to the help of Healing Allies in Seattle, WA, Emily has this amazing opportunity.
We need your help. Please help us reach our goal and give Emily the new chance she deserves. Thank you for your consideration