More MS news articles for Oct 2001

MS sufferer's new leash of life

Published: Thursday, 4 October 2001, 09:29 AM

MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS sufferer Jonathan Stone would be lost without his dog, Dunbar.

Not only is he good company but he can also pick up the post, put clothes in the washing machine, answer the phone and pay for goods in the local shops.

Mr Stone, of Alwoodley, Leeds, is the first person in Leeds to be partnered with a Helping Hound from the Canine Partners for Independence charity, which recently was given £108,000 by Yorkshire Electricity to help fund the project.

Dunbar has been trained to do 90 different commands to help with daily tasks, including picking up items of clothing, pressing buttons, calling a lift and handing a wallet to a shopkeeper.

Since being diagnosed with MS six years ago Mr Stone was finding such tasks difficult.

Mr Stone, who has been partnered with Dunbar for seven months, said: "In the short time I have known Dunbar he has changed my life. He's a friend.

"It is not just the physical help but also the emotional support. He is a great help around the house but it is also good to know he is there to look after me."

Mr Stone, who runs a contract cleaning business from home, said he has met a lot of people while walking Dunbar and has more confidence to leave the house.

Copyright (c) This is Leeds.