Service Dog Warns Hasbrouck Heights Girl of Impending Seizures

Marybeth Barrios was united with a Labradoodle dog whose keen senses can warn of a seizure in the girl before it happens.

Marybeth Barrios and Walley, the seizure-sniffing Labradoodle (photo/Hasbrouck Heights Police Department)
Marybeth Barrios and Walley, the seizure-sniffing Labradoodle (photo/Hasbrouck Heights Police Department)
Young Marybeth Barrios has had to deal with a severe seizure disorder since she was born, and it's meant her parents have had to keep a close eye on her all the time.

Walley, a black Labradoodle, may change all that for the little girl. Marybeth and her parents flew to San Diego to meet the service dog, spending several weeks working with the pup who's trained to alert Marybeth and her parents when he senses the girl may be on the verge of a seizure.

By alerting Marybeth and her family to the seizure, and by being trained to do a deep pressure massage to ease an anxiety attack, the girl will able to play freely and even sleep on her own for the first time in her life.

The Hasbrouck Heights Police, along with other well-wishers, had a big hand in helping to raise the $10,000 a specially trained dog like Walley costs, according to a report in the Cliffview Pilot.

The police department announced on their website that Marybeth and Walley were united in time for Christmas by Little Angels Service Dogs in San Diego, an organization that trains dogs to be alert for the chemical changes that signal an imminent seizure.

"This is going to change her life," Tricia O’Brien Barrios, Marybeth's mother, tearfully told the Cliffview Pilot.


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