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Ohio Marine Saved After Dog Dials 911

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Ohio Marine Saved After Dog Dials 911
Photo credit: pmarkham / Flickr

Major is a Labrador Retriever-Pit Bull mix who lives with his owner in Zanesville, Ohio. Major belongs to retired Sergeant Terry McGlade, a wounded veteran who suffered from a traumatic brain injury when a road side bomb exploded during a tour of duty in Afghanistan. McGlade suffers from PTSD and memory loss.

Terry McGlade was getting ready to take Major for a walk, and had taken his dog into the back yard when he experienced a seizure and collapsed, unconscious, on the ground. In an act of amazing heroism and stunning intelligence, Major removed the cell phone from McGlade’s pocket and placed his paws instinctively on the keypad.

The phone was set up to dial 9-1-1 automatically. After calling the police several times and hanging up, the police were able to track down the phone’s location. After phoning the police for the final time, Major proceeded to the front yard, where he wanted patiently for the authorities. Upon their arrival, Major led the police to McGlade, still seizing in the back yard.

Recordings from the 9-1-1 dispatch do not reveal that the caller on the other end is a dog. What can be heard is the garbled voice of Terry McGlade. However, the evidence that Major facilitated the phone call is clear: the cell phone’s case was marred by his teeth marks.

According to an interview on Fox News Insider, Major assists McGlade with his disability and is trained to sense when a seizure is coming. However, Major is not trained to call 9-1-1. McGlade credits Major’s actions to his incredible sense of intelligence and good instincts.

Major is a service dog who is trained to help McGlade with numerous household and everyday tasks. As an example of this, McGlade can ask Major to check the locks around the house. On this request, Major will check every door in the house to ensure that the doors have been locked. This type of assistance is important for Terry McGlade, who has memory difficulties as a result of his injuries.

Major came from a 501(c)(3) organization called Stiggy’s Dogs, which specializes in rescuing and training dogs. The ultimate goal is to place these dogs in the homes of veterans, to help the veterans deal with the wounds of wars; for instance, with the effects of injuries like PTSD or a TBI. Dogs like Major are taken from shelters, abusive or dysfunctional living situations and animal control agencies.

Terry McGlade credits Major with saving his life. Additionally, he reports that this is not the first time Major has helped him. McGlade reports in the interview with Fox that before Major came into his life, he was going through a dark period. Dealing with PTSD is difficult for many veterans, and for McGlade it was a serious struggle. If not for the companionship and help from his service dog, McGlade feels that he may have become another veteran suicide statistic.

Major is clearly at ease with his owner and seems to be a happy dog. Together, McGlade and Major make a wonderful pair — and McGlade knows that if he ever needs help, he has a good friend and valuable asset on hand.

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