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Woman says 'hero' while others concerned over service dog

KARMA.jpg

Palmyra resident Flo Schaefer couldn't believe what she saw on Facebook.

"So mad I had tears in my eyes," Schaefer explained.

It's a picture a man took of her walking out of Wal-Mart with her service dog.

Schaefer mentioned the man was upset over her dog, Karma.

"She's amazing,” Schaefer said. “I've never had an animal like her before".

Schaefer pointed out the one-year-old puppy comes in handy to help with her seizures.

A health issue she suffers from after a dangerous car crash in 2009.

She said Karma alerts her 10 minutes prior to an attack.

This helps Schaefer know to either sit or lay down to prevent head or face injuries.

"Now I'm epileptic so there are like grand mal seizures,” Schaefer pointed out. “I just fall into them. I never feel them coming on or anything".

Elizabeth Boyer is a professional service dog trainer at Alpha Dog Training Center in Quincy

"I've been training dogs for 19 years," Boyer said.

She explained Karma is considered a seizure alert dog.

"Your body chemicals change right before you have a seizure,” Boyer said. “The dog picks up on that and would come up and alert you".

Schaefer explained concerns of Karma being a service "Pitbull" is also an issue people have.

"The ADA does not require that it be a specific breed," Boyer mentioned.

American with Disabilities Act also doesn't require service animals to wear a vest, ID tag or specific harness.

The group also pointed out people with disabilities have the right to train the dog themselves.

This is something Schaefer does daily to help better train Karma.

"My dog is with me to keep my alive is the way I see it,” Schaefer said. “She's pretty much like my hero".

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