Man’s best friend adds positive impact to kids with special needs
FOX | June 11, 2012 | By Chris Olberholtz and Matt Stewart
LEAWOOD, KS (KCTV) – Dogs are amazing animals and can do so many things. Now, one national organization is pairing up service dogs with kids with special needs.
An 8-year-old boy from Leawood just brought home his new best friend, and the positive impact it has made in his life is amazing.
Every morning, the parents of 8-year-old Charlie Sykora lift him out of bed and buckle him into his wheelchair so he can get around.
Charlie has Type 1 Spinal Muscular Atrophy, or SMA for short. He can’t walk. It is hard for him to play with other kids his age. He has struggled to make friends. But now he has a new best friend.
Meadow is half lab, half retriever, and she has helped people see Charlie in a different light.
“Charlie had been saying he didn’t want to go out in public because he didn’t like people staring at him, he didn’t like that feeling,” Charlie’s mother, Kim Sykora, said.
Charlie says people never used to come up to him before, only his family and friends.
“With a dog, it opens it up, it gives people a reason to approach,” his mom said.
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