Teen would like assistance in paying for a service dog
May 1, 2019
A Green River High School sophomore is trying to raise money to pay for a service dog to help her manage her Type 1 diabetes.
"I was diagnosed Oct. 5, 2017, with Type 1 diabetes," Mya Tollefson said. "My pancreas was attacked by my body and not working, so I have to take insulin."
While Tollefson was at school, her friend, Delaney Gardea, was telling her about service dogs that can detect when someone' blood sugar is too low or too high.
"I didn't know what she was planning," Tollefson said. "I got a surprise for you." Tollefson said Gardea told her she was going to get her a service dog.
"I freaked out," she said.
According to a flyer Tollefson and others are handing out, diabetes service dogs are scent-trained to alert when the person's blood sugar is too high or too low. In addition, a companion would provide Tollefson with emotional support and comfort.
Tollefson currently uses continuous glucose monitor that is placed on her arm and connected to her cellphone through an app.
This monitor and app allow Tollefson to constantly keep track of her blood sugar levels. However, even though she's using the latest technology to track her blood sugar levels, Tollefson sometimes forgets to take her insulin.
"I forget a lot of times," Tollefson admitted. "You see these other kids just eating without dosing."
Tollefson has tried other ways to ensure she gets insulin when she needs to, but those didn't seem to work out so well.
"I had the pump for a little bit, but we were having problems with it," she said.
Tollefson said she has been accepted into the Tattle Tails service-dog program out of Salt Lake City. She will receive her dog when it is 10 weeks old and it will already know when her blood sugar is out of range and how to notify her.
Eventually, the dog will become a fully-trained dog. Tollefson is set to receive this dog in October and thought it cost about $1o,000.
After about a year of training with the dog, Tollefson said she can then take the dog with her wherever she goes.
According to the GoFundMe for Tollefson, only $800 of that goal has been raised. To donate residents can go to the GuFundMe page http://www.gofundme.com/7m8cbu-service-dog-for-mya