Aired Wednesday April 21st, 2010 at 7:00 pm on KUED HD Ch. 7.1
Each year hundreds of people with disabilities find relief, assurance, trust and lasting friendships at organizations that train assistance dogs. "Through a Dog's Eyes" airing on KUED Channel 7 Wednesday, April 21 at 7:00 p.m. follows the journey of five recipients as they go through the heartwarming and often difficult process of receiving a service dog and the life-changing result of that bond.
"Through a Dog's Eyes" is an optimistic, buoyant documentary that highlights the unique canine-recipient teaching philosophy of Jennifer Arnold - founder of one of the nation's largest service dog organizations, Canine Assistance.
Also interviewed is the world's foremost dog expert, Dr. Ádám Miklósi, founder of the Family Dog Research Project in Budapest, Hungary. Miklósi analyzes Arnold's training methods and discusses how science supports the training philosophy.
The film captures the intimate connection involved in the matching process between the five recipients and their new dogs. The journey continues as both canine and recipient learn how to live and work together. "Through a Dog's Eyes" is not only an inspiring collection of individual stories but also about family support and encouragement.
Bryson Casey, 30, served in Iraq as a captain with the National Guard. Upon his return home Bryson suffered a debilitating injury in a car accident, and is now a quadriplegic. Will Bryson's Canine Assistant dog, Wagner, be up to the task of providing him with companionship, as well as helping to navigate the simple tasks of daily life?
Aiden, 6, was born with cerebral palsy and spends most of his time in a wheelchair. Aiden hopes that his dog, Nala, will help him at school with routine tasks such as picking up pencils, as well as offer silent support in social situations. Will Nala's presence help break down barriers and allow other children to feel more comfortable around Aiden? Viewers will be inspired by Aiden's never-ending optimism and his zeal for life.
Destiny, 11, lives in La Vergne, Tenn. Destiny and her dog, Salsa, immediately fell in love with each other during Canine Assistants' training camp in November. Suffering from a rare form of epilepsy, Destiny has constant low-level seizures around the clock. Will Salsa have the ability to alert Destiny and her family of impending seizures? Her parents are hoping to offer their daughter a measure of freedom she has never before experienced.
Twins, Chase & Connor, 6, have a form of cerebral palsy known as spastic diplegia, which affects the muscles of the lower body. Both boys hope their Canine Assistance dogs will help with everyday tasks as well help with companionship. But will Chase realize his dream of one day walking with the support of his dog, Oakley?
"This film will change the way people think about their own dogs," says executive producer Naomi S. Boak, "Through a Dog's Eyes shows the importance of the human-canine bond and how, when fostered, that bond can grow into a beautiful, life-changing relationship."
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