After two year wait Lincoln girl is paired with autism response dog

Twelve-year-old Isabell has been waiting for this day for two years.

Three years ago the Lincoln fifth-grader was diagnosed with Autism.

That’s when her mom Kendra began searching for ways to help her daughter and decided on a service dog, but finding an organization willing to help wasn’t easy.

“I started reaching out to different organizations and when I’d talk to them and tell them what Isabell would need they would say she’s too high functioning to be a high priority for them,” Kendra said.

That’s when Kendra met Elizabeth Higley.

Higley owns Uplifting Paws, a 501C3 non-profit based in Lincoln that trains service and therapy dogs for people.

The two began working together and Isabell was matched with Krystal.

The now two-year-old pup began training at just three-months-old with Higley to help Isabell.

“She is going to interrupt any episodes she may have, if there’s any self mutilation she’s going to interrupt her from picking her fingers, and provide deep pressure therapy and light pressure therapy,” Higley said.

On Saturday after two years of tireless work Krystal will be going home with Isabell to be her furever companion.

She will accompany Isabell everywhere she goes including school.

The 12-year-old is ecstatic to have a dog of her own and Kendra was left in awe of the quick bond the duo built.

“It’s kind of been amazing. Krystal picks up on her moods. We’ve had Krystal in our house a few times trying to acclimate the cats, trying to acclimate the cats, I mean Isabell bumped her head on the wall just goofing off and Krystal was right there immediately like are you O.K., so it’s been kind of neat to see that interaction from the beginning,” Kendra said.

While there’s still training to be done, the future looks doggone bright for this new dynamic duo.

If you would like to learn more about Uplifting Paws and the work they do you can do so by clicking here.

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