Family Dog Saves Boy with Down Syndrome

Family Dog Saves Boy with Down Syndrome

Last update: 06 July, 2018

Everybody knows what a special bond dogs and children share. We also know that dogs have a highly developed sixth sense, like a super-awareness of their surroundings. Well, today we want to share this story about a family dog that saved a boy with Down Syndrome. It’s a touching example of the genuine love that pets feel for their families.

Family dog saves boy with Down Syndrome

The Duffy family is from the United States. They consider Teddy, the family dog, to be an integral member of the family member but also their son’s guardian angel. Riley is five years old and has Down Syndrome, but thanks to Teddy, Riley is still alive.

It all happened in the Duffy family home. Riley was playing hide and seek with his older brothers. To find the best hiding spot, Riley decided to climb into the dryer and shut the door. Before he could react, the door locked, and the dryer turned on trapping the terrified boy inside!

That’s when Teddy, the family dog, sprang into action. Once he realized that the boy was in danger, he ran to find Riley’s mom, who was busy doing chores. Frantically barking, he caught her attention and the attention of the other brothers who were watching television.

Riley’s mom noticed that Teddy’s behavior was unusual, so she followed him to the dryer. That’s when she heard Riley’s hysterical cries.

She turned off the dryer immediately and pulled Riley out. He was mostly unharmed with a few bruises and some minor burns. Thanks to Teddy’s heroic actions, Riley was spared far more serious injuries, including severe burns from the high temperatures — or even death.

A canine companion for a boy with Down Syndrome in Argentina

Thankfully, there are even more great stores out there. This one comes from Argentina and also involved a dog and a boy with Down Syndrome. The dog’s name is Himalaya and he’s a Labrador. The boy’s name is Herman and he lives in the city of La Plata, in Buenos Aires.

Herman’s mother published a video to share his story with the world. When Herman was 5 years old he didn’t like to be touched. No one, except for his mom, could touch him. So, he spent a lot of time just playing alone and far away from people.

All of this changed when Himalaya came into his life. The little boy couldn’t resist the dog’s affection. Now they are the best of friends!

All previous attempts from Herman’s parents, family, and doctors had been in vain. But this beautiful Labrador was the just the thing he needed to climb out of his shell. Himalaya became a true friend, nurse, and therapist who will never leave Herman’s side.

Canine therapy for children with Down Syndrome

Down syndrome kids and dogs in therapy.

Lately, certain organizations that care for Down Syndrome children and their families have added dogs as part of their assistance and socialization programs. Part of the dogs’ job is to help children adapt to society better.

Over the course of their lives, individuals with Down Syndrome can really improve their quality of life. This is precisely what the stimulation and games with the dogs can do. It can help these individuals deal with the daily activities of life more productively. It will help them to get used to situations that they may encounter.

People with Down Syndrome tend to isolate themselves and be very shy. They also talk in a low voice and do not want to be touched in any way. So, one of the activities that they start with is going to a coffee shop with the dog. The idea is to get coffee for themselves and ask for water for the dog. These simple steps can help them communicate better and more freely.

In the beginning, some are afraid of the dogs and don’t even want to get close to them. But once they start trusting them, it’s impossible to separate them. It’s a wonderful change for the family and doctors to see in their loved ones!

Source of the images:  and

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.