Meet our sweet girl Olivia Grace, or for short, Liv. She is an 8 year old little girl diagnosed with Doose/LGS, a severe seizure disorder. Up until her first seizure she was a healthy active child ahead of most milestones. Three days before her third birthday she had her first seizure. She was diagnosed with generalized epilepsy, had a few more seizures and then went seizure free for a year and a half. Sadly, in February 2020, the seizures came back full force and we have yet to achieve freedom and were officially given our diagnosis of Doose/LGS. She now experiences a variety of seizures -Tonic Clonic (also known as Grand Mal), Nocturnal Tonic Clonic, Atonic (Drop Seizures) Myclonic Jerks, Absence Seizures, as well as some Focal type seizures.
Liv is currently on multiple seizure medications, a behavior medication for ADHD (which goes along with her Doose diagnosis), has a VNS implant in her chest to help stop seizures as well as a RNS implant in her brain to also help stop seizures. These are not a guarantee, but at least help some and give us a small peace of mind as she is prone to SUDEP due to her disorder. She is also receiving multiple therapies (Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Vision Therapy and Speech Therapy) to help her gain the skills that have been lost or regressed while fighting the battle of Doose. Sadly, this is one of the many things that comes with the disease is regression on all ends.
Liv was a very outgoing child before February of 2020. She never met a stranger and would talk your ear off from the moment she met you. She still has her spunky personality, and love for life, even after her major setback. She loves animals and absolutely wants to be a “normal” kid and be involved in everything kids do, which is unfortunately hard sometimes with her disabilities. But, this is one thing we hope will be different with a service dog.
There are some very specific tasks Olivia’s service dog will be trained to do:
● Seizure alert: Olivia’s dog will be trained to detect seizures, alert us, and provide
comfort for her. This will also help give her some freedom from us and more peace at night with there being another way of notifying us if she is having a seizure.
● Behavior disruption: Olivia can easily become overwhelmed by many things in our
world that we don’t notice, especially in big social situations. Her service dog will be
there to provide comfort and companionship during times of stress whether that be
through hugs and kisses, a paw or snuggle in her lap or just as a friend who provides
● Tethering: When we are out and Olivia wants to wander off, having a tether to hold onto that is on the dog will provide her a sense of awareness that she has a job to do and needs to stay on task with us.
In addition to these tasks which can only be performed by a well-trained service dog, Olivia’s
dog will be a loving companion for her to help ease the stress of daily life and be a constant friend in an unpredictable world, especially when she feels lonely and left out due to her disease.
We have decided to work with the organization 4 Paws for Ability because they are one of the
best when it comes to training service dogs for children. They are kind and very clearly devoted
to helping others and especially children like Olivia. On average it costs between $40,000-
$60,000 to raise and train a service dog. We are responsible for raising $20,000 for Olivia’s
dog. After we raise our funds 4 Paws will begin training the perfect dog for Olivia.
The wait time is currently 2-2.5 years.
Thank you for taking the time to read Olivia’s story and considering donating to help this become possible.