A year ago we shared Brenna Powell’s journey to have a Diabetic Service Dog by her side. She started her own GoFundMe page and started fundraising for a lifesaving service dog. Brenna faces the daily challenges of being a Type One Diabetic while going to college in Laramie. She is also the daughter of our very own beloved, Dr. Brad Powell. As a part of the Animal Medical Center family, we wanted to help Brenna reach her goal of $15,000 to receive her service dog. With the help of our wonderful community, we were all able to reach her goal by the end of March 2016! Soon after she was assigned Junie B! Junie B started training as a young puppy and now at 16 months old, she completed her training ready to meet Brenna!
So with great excitement, Junie B and Brenna are now finally together! Brenna also had to do some training so she can continue training Junie B every single day. Brenna has specific exercises she completes with Junie B to make sure she is always learning. Junie B completes 3-5 training sessions a day, which also includes alerts. Junie B is trained to alert Brenna if her blood sugar is too low or too high. If Brenna’s blood sugar has been steady all day, she keeps cotton balls with blood sugar scents on them to test her. She hides the cotton ball and Junie B alerts Brenna the second she smells it. So when Brenna’s real sugar levels are too low or too high, she’ll alert her quickly, and she does it about 15-20 minutes before Brenna’s Continuous Glucose Monitor! This will help Brenna keep on top of her blood sugar levels and keep her healthy and focused on her studies.
Junie B is a working service dog, so she wears her vest when she is working out in public so everyone knows that she is working. Brenna says Junie B gets so excited when she gets to put on her vest because she knows its time to work and she loves it. There is also time to play and for snuggles which strengthen the bond between Junie B and Brenna. Junie B goes everywhere that Brenna goes and she will go to class with her every day, to church and to all of Brenna’s activities. They just started on this wonderful lifelong journey together, and we are blessed to be able to be a part of that.
We can’t wait to meet Junie B!
To learn more about Diabetic Service Dogs and how they save lives visit Diabetic Alert Dogs of America.