The Service Dog

Lemons to Lemonade

This story is about self-empowerment, companionship, and overcoming limitations. It's about turning lemons into lemonade with help from a furry friend.

Alison suffers from seizures, vertigo, and migraines all of which her service dog Wynn can detect before they happen. For Alison, this means being able to leave her home to go when and where she pleases instead of stuck inside in isolation and fear of the next episode. Having a loyal and well-trained dog allows her to live a more normal, care-free life.

Canine Partners for Life

Wynn was trained outside of Philadelphia at Canine Partners for Life, a nonprofit that trains service dogs for people with disabilities. While there, dogs spend about two years in customized training to meet the needs of their owners.

Filming these incredible animals was a blast, but what made the experience valuable and the story inspiring were the stories I heard from those involved. One woman used to wear a helmet 24/7 because of her seizures, but because of her service dog's ability to warn her of an upcoming episode, she can safely live without it.

Philly DoGooder Awards

This video was produced through Philly DoGooder, a program matching 25 filmmakers and 25 nonprofits in two weeks of filmmaking for social good. Participating became more than an opportunity to give back to the nonprofits that help benefit our world (although that was part of it), it was an invitation to connect with a mission on an intimate level, to get to really know why their work is life changing, and then share it with the world.