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Rylee & Lucy Diabetic Service Dog | San Diego Photos by Amy Gray

Melanie Monroe and I were excited to meet a very special dog yesterday, when we photographed our friend Keri’s daughter Rylee and her new chocolate lab, Lucy. Rylee (11) was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in April. When I first met Rylee several years ago, she had just saved her mother’s life as a kindergartner who dialed 911 when Keri (also diabetic and pregnant, at the time, with Rylee’s little brother) had a dangerous low and was unresponsive. Now Rylee is dealing with the same disease, and her doctor suggested a diabetic service dog to alert Rylee and her family when lows are eminent – for both Rylee and Keri.

Since the training is very expensive, Rylee’s friends and family joined in with lots of fundraisers to foot the bill. There were hundreds of handmade dog-shaped cookies, Origami Owl necklaces, and a Chick-Fil-A fundraising night! Just last Friday, Lucy, a one-year-old chocolate lab, came home! All $13,000 have been raised, and Lucy is well on her way to being trained to detect lows for both Rylee and Keri. Keri & Rylee’s sweet thank you card to all their friends and donors reads, “To each of you who either sent a donation on our FundRazr page, bought our cookies, attended a fundraiser, bought a necklace, or gave us a donation ‘just because,’ we say THANK YOU! You have helped us more than you will ever know and we could not have done this without you and without God! Thank you for blessing us with this incredible gift and for believing with us that ‘God Will Make a Way!'”

Whether you have a service dog or just a basic pet, there are so many benefits to having a dog. Check them out here.

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