Giving Paws: Having a Service Dog for a Hidden Disability
Martha lives with chronic illness, but is determined to stay strong enough to continue working at the zoo, which she loves. When her symptoms worsen and she starts fainting, she gets a service dog for support. With Henry by her side, she expects life to get easier, but that’s not what happens. Henry is a Chihuahua mix, much smaller than the familiar guide dogs for the blind, and Martha’s disability is not obvious, so when they go into public places people ask, “He’s so small. How does he help you?” Or, “You’re not blind, why do you need a service dog?” Martha is embarrassed by the unwanted attention and wants to give up, but Henry is not ready to retire. Giving Paws tells the story of Martha’s journey with Henry, overcoming hurdles and embracing unexpected blessings. It will appeal to all dog lovers, and will provide hope for anyone who could benefit from the support of a service dog.