When Shanna Wilkinson turned 13-years-old, she picked out a Shetland sheepdog puppy for her birthday present. She was going to raise and train the dog for AKC competitions.
Instead of picking the best of the litter, Shanna picked out a sickly and small puppy who no one thought would survive.
Despite this, Shanna brought the little puppy home and named her Holly. She bottle fed and cared for her until Holly was able to eat on her own. This once runt of the litter was now healthy and doing well because of Shanna’s constant love and care.
Four years later, Holly saved Shanna’s life in return. In 2004, Shanna began collapsing and experiencing seizures. Right before the seizures occurred, Holly would bark, whine and paw at Shanna.
Shanna was diagnosed with late-onset juvenile epilepsy and Holly was able to predict five to ten minutes before Shanna was about to have a seizure.
“Even when Holly has gotten kicked [by Shanna], she won’t leave,” Shanna’s mother said. “She wants to be right there. I’ve tried to physically pick her up and move her and she comes right back.”
“I feel comfortable to go out in public and that I’ll have an opportunity to go away from everyone and go lay down when Holly alerts me,” said Shanna, now 20. “[Holly] has really given me back my independence.”
Holly is now Shanna’s full-time service dog, and Holly has even received a Canine of Excellence award from an AKC club in Boise for her life-saving skill. She also will be receiving another award in December.
Shanna said that she owes Holly her life. Shanna’s mother remembers the day that Shanna picked out Holly and said, “Sometimes, things just turn out exactly like they’re supposed to.”
Source: The Salt Like Tribune