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The Northeast Ohio community of Canton Township are banding together to find a very special dog. Darla, a 6-month-old German Shepherd, is the therapy dog for the Myers’ family’s son, “DD.”
Darla is a therapy dog to DD, who is autistic and has a speech delay. Because of the special bond they share, Darla has encouraged DD to finally begin speaking. “She helped him learn how to say things like ‘dah dob Darla,’ and that was ‘good job Darla,’ or ‘dop it’ or ‘dit down’ for ‘sit down’ and she helped us think of really creative ways to encourage him to want to say things, and at first he was scared of her and then they became good friends,” said Melanie Myers, the boy’s mother.
But, on December 27, Darla ran away from the family’s backyard to chase another dog that was loose, and they haven’t seen her since. Now, DD and his family are desperate to bring their dog home. “She’s part of the family, you know. Whatever it’s gonna take,” said their father.
The Myers have offered a $500 reward to anyone that can bring their dog home to them. And, as Darla continues to be missed, members of the community are stepping forward to help, to the amazement of the Myers who recently moved to Canton Township from their former home in Pennsylvania. A local groomer has added a $500 donation to a dog therapy program when Darla is found. And, a local German Shepherd breeder has offered the family another puppy to continue DD’s therapy, in the event that Darla doesn’t return home.
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