Autism is a condition which can have a profound impact on someone’s existence. It is becoming clear that a trained dog can often be of assistance to someone who suffers from autism. It appears that certain breeds of dog may be particularly useful to a person with autism. This is because certain breeds respond especially well to training.
As recently reported in the Valley New Dispatch, Nicholas Lapinski is just nine years old. He has been afflicted by autism, but his German shepherd dog is assisting him to cope with his debilitating condition. His trusty dog is called Stitch. Stitch has been trained to search for Nicholas if he goes missing and will not relax in the absence of Nicholas. This gives the parents of Nicholas more peace of mind than they would otherwise have. However, this is only one aspect of the service Stitch provides.
Since October 2008, Stitch has been a much loved member of the Lapinski household. Stitch has been giving help to Nicholas in a way which has apparently promoted his social development. This has stopped Nicholas from being so isolated and contributed significantly to his well being. Talking has become easier for Nicholas and other people respond to him more when he is with Stitch. Nicholas’ perspective has become less introspective and his father, Chris gives Stitch some of the credit for this.
Chris Lapinski stated:
The dog is something that helps him open up. Stitch works as a catalyst to help him with his social skills.
In the United States, dogs not only help people with autism, but also help people with conditions like muscular dystrophy.
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