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Girl bakes brownies to earn money for diabetic alert dog

By Ashley Kewish | Posted - Sep 30th, 2013 @ 8:15pm

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LEHI — An 8-year-old girl learned she has Type 1 diabetes, but instead of feeling defeat, she made a goal to raise $15,000 to buy a diabetic alert dog.

Many 8-year-olds worry about the next birthday party or what to wear to school, but third grader, Hannah Guymon, recently discovered she has some serious health problems to deal with.

"I just don't like shots," Hannah said.

Guyman's mother, Heather Guymon, has to give her daughter daily insulin shots, sometimes as many as seven times a day.

"She's always been very petite, tall, and active," Heather said.

Unlike, Type 2 diabetes, doctors don't know the exact cause for Type 1 diabetes. When blood sugars often drop too low or too high and can lead to serious complications if not managed properly.

"I'm scared in the night, my blood sugar is going to drop," Hannah said.

Being frightened about her health has motivated Hannah to do some research. She discovered information about medical alert dogs.

"It sleeps with you," Hannah said. "If your blood sugar is too low or too high, (the dog) wakes you up."

The diabetic alert dogs are a constant companion for those with Type 1 diabetes. The animals are specifically trained to smell changes in saliva. However, the dogs typically cost about $15,000 because of a 10-month training process.

Hannah would need to submit monthly saliva samples, and have several training sessions to obtain one of the service animals. However, insurance doesn't cover the cost, so Hannah decided to come up with a plan to pay for the dog herself.

"We are making brownies," she said. "(The recipe) says it makes 24 of them, so we might need to make 10 batches or something."

The dog would mean an extra layer of protection.

–Heather Guymon

Hannah said she plans to use all the resources available to her.

"We are going to find the perfect spot," she said.

Heather hopes for an alert dog just as much as her daughter.

"The dog would mean an extra layer of protection," she said.

She knows it's going to take a lot more than brownies to reach their goal, but she's willing to try. She said she wants to support her daughter, who right now, is acting much more mature than her age.

An online fund has been started to help Hannah raise money for a diabetic alert dog. To donate to Hannah's cause, click here.


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