Service Dog Changes Boy’s Life For The Better

Photo by Dzmitry Dudov on Unsplash

( – Topaz, a golden retriever, has transformed the life of Chaise Clouser from Pennsylvania. The 9-year-old boy, along with his parents and siblings live in Shelocta, Pennsylvania, which only has a population of around 100 people, according to Newsweek.

Topaz is a service dog that has specifically been trained to help Chaise with his autism and ADHD symptoms. In a series of interviews, his mother, Ashley Clouser, revealed that the dog loves her son in a way that she had never seen a dog love anyone before. She shared their lives had been relatively normal until the health emergency in 2020 which led to the entire world shutting down.

She said that in 2020 while they were at home, they started noticing that their son was exhibiting some behaviors that they had never seen from him before, including “severe aggressive behaviors.” More importantly, what they found was that none of the de-escalation strategies they were using helped him calm down, which meant that his parents needed to restrain him so that he would not hurt himself, his little brother, or them.

She shared this was completely life-changing and had resulted in Chaise needing to be admitted to a psychiatric hospital for treatment. After treatment, things were slightly more manageable but the situation continued to be scary.

Closure pointed out that there was no “manual” that could be used for addressing the behavior of autistic children, and that as they were running out of options she decided to contact 4 Paws for Ability, a nonprofit that helped provide veterans and children with disabilities with service dogs. By the end of July 2020, Chaise had been approved for a service dog which meant that they needed to begin fundraising to acquire this dog.

It wasn’t until early 2023 that the family was finally financially prepared to get Chaise a service dog. However, once Topaz entered their lives and started attending school with Chaise, things began to change. Ashley noted that her son hates to be separated from Topaz, and that the golden retriever will rush to comfort him if she notices him in distress. According to Ashley, the young boy’s behavior has improved significantly since the arrival of Topaz.

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