Yellow Labrador-Golden Retriever cross Leland can open doors,
retrieve the phone and pick up dropped items. No, he’s not your typical pet. Leland is a
highly trained assistance dog from Canine Companions for Independence®. And he’s
changed Linda Uriadko’s life in countless ways.
“This year I became a snow bird and spent my winter in Florida. Without Leland by my
side I would never have been able to do that,” Linda shares. “The reason I applied for an
assistance dog from Canine Companions was to give me more independence. I have
multiple sclerosis and now use a scooter for mobility.” With a cold nose, warm heart and
a variety of skills, Leland helps Linda achieve independence on a daily basis.
Leland responds to over 40 commands. He is capable of picking up a variety of items –
including keys, articles of clothing and remote controls. He also opens doors and turns
lights on and off. “During the day he picks up everything I drop. If I want a bottle of
water, I’ll tell Leland and he’ll open the refrigerator, get a water bottle, go around and
close the refrigerator and bring the water to me. In the morning I show him where I put
the phone and if I need it during the day he goes and gets it for me. He loves working,”
Linda explained. “And in addition to all of that he gives me unconditional love, company
Leland has been nominated for a national award for his outstanding service. The
American Humane Association’s Hero Dog Awards acknowledge dogs that are making a
difference in people’s lives, just like Leland. The winning dog will receive $5,000 for its
charity of choice. Leland chooses Canine Companions for Independence! Canine
Companions provides assistance dogs to recipients free of charge.
To vote for Leland visit: http://www.herodogawards.org/vote/?nominee=26887892