Bentley is the sweetest little red headed boy! He loves cars, games, and dogs! His favorite thing is to run his fingers through the dogs hair. Bentley was diagnosed with autism at four years old. He is a twin, so as Bentley got older we quickly noticed differences between him and his twin sister. Bentley struggles with communicating, which makes it very difficult for Bentley to tell us what he needs or wants. Bentley has a very difficult time making friends at school due to his communication skills. He often says “no one likes me” or “they hate me”. Hearing this as a mother breaks my heart for him. Bentley “elopes” which can be extremely dangerous, especially in high trafficked areas. Having a service dog that specializes in “tethering” would be tremendously beneficial for him. These highly intelligent dogs also track children that have histories with running off, or hiding when they shouldn’t. They are trained to search and find children like Bentley, which for myself as a mom can be lifesaving. Bentley also has what we call “meltdowns”. An autism service dog can be trained to apply deep pressure to children that have these behaviors to help regulate their bodies, and help them calm down. Deep pressure has worked very well for Bentley. He also struggles with sleeping. Many people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder have very difficult times falling and staying asleep. 80% of people with autism have a more difficult time than people not on the spectrum when it comes to sleeping. People with autism also spend about 30 min in REM sleep (rapid eye movement) which is very important for memory and learning. Having this dog would help Bentley become more comfortable and relaxed to get better sleeping patterns. Our family has done extensive research and decided that “4 paws for ability” is the best choice for our sweet boy!