He is a three and a half years old Labrador who was trained by an assistance dog charity called Canine Partners. Elgin has completely transformed my life, and has saved my life by on numerous occasions by fetching help when I am choking and losing consciousness (I have problems swallowing due to a medical condition ). Several when I’ve been home alone and choking Elgin has managed to save me himself by thumping me in the back with his head or paws then nudging my throat hard with his nose, he then frantically licks my mouth (it’s gross but it makes cough and splutter and start breathing again so I don’t mind the grossness lol). We think he’s learnt to copy what Mum does to stop me choking which is incredible.
He's given me back some of the independence I lost when I became a wheelchair user and is my little ray of sunshine. He helps me with things like dressing and undressing, fetches the phone when it rings, picks up dropped items, gets things off low shelves in shops for me, opens and closes doors, raises the alarm if I fall when transferring to my wheelchair and dozens of other tasks. He also alerts me to low or high diabetic sugar levels, and he alerts me about ten minutes before I have a severe muscle spasm or seizure. This gives me time to take some medication so that the spasm isn't as bad and doesn't cause as much damage - they are so violent that they often dislocate my joints.
I’m currently fighting severe repeated infections and feel very ill with it and very low mood wise. I’m being treated at home with daily nurse visits as I don’t cope well with hospital stays (I especially hate being away from Elgin). He is what’s keeping me going - I’m determined to be back to my ‘normal’ soon so that I can enjoy spending time with him outside of the house. Love you boy, you’re my hero.