Canine Partners for Life Service Dog Helps Danielle Cope With Narcolepsy & Cataplexy

Danielle-Brooks

By Danielle Brooks

As many of you know, when you have a condition like narcolepsy and cataplexy, you can, and rightly so, start to doubt your abilities and what you can achieve in your life. Many, including myself, feel cataplexy “lurking” in our body all the time, ready to sneak-up and take over. I personally began to guard myself while doing simple daily tasks, like walking up stairs, standing near windows in a tall building, laughing too much, and even riding in elevators.

In addition, I found the allure of sleep made the thought of riding a bus or even sitting down in a shoe store questionable for me. Leaving the predictability of home started a series of questions. You may ask these yourself. What if I collapse? How long will I be in paralysis? What if I fall asleep on the bus? Will I wake up if I dose off? Will I wake up to my alarm? Will I have enough energy to make it? Where can I take a nap?

Even just wondering about these questions makes me tired sometimes. So, I found that I started to make either/or type choices. Do I go to the mall or just order it on Amazon instead? Do I go to the game or stay home and watch TV?

That has all changed for me now due to a magnificent dog named Rollo from Canine Partners for Life (k94life.org). Rollo spent the first two years of his life training for his role with me. He has put an end to my questioning and I no longer worry.

Canine Partners for Life specializes in service dogs for people with mobility issues, diabetes, epilepsy and cardiac issues, etc. Together, Rollo and I are the test pilots for narcolepsy and cataplexy.

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