This Texas High School's Yearbook Will Feature A Service Dog As Part Of The Freshman Class

"I don’t know what she would do without him."

When students at Timber Creek High School in Fort Worth, Texas open their yearbooks this year, they might be surprised to find a furry face among the freshman class.


Photo Credit: Greg Janda Kathy Beers

Soldier Campbell is a service dog who has been by ninth grader Kathryn Campbell's side all year long. "[Soldier] provides consistency and stability for her," Kim Campbell, Kathryn's mom, told the school newspaper, the Timber Creek Talon. "[Soldier and Kathryn] spend almost 24 hours a day together.. [they] are a team."

Because Campbell suffers from unpredictable seizures, Soldier's constant presence is essential. "For Soldier, Kathryn is his responsibility," she explained. "Due to her disabilities, there is not much that Kathryn can control about her life… but Soldier is always there."

Kim Campbell also told NBC 5, a local news channel, that Soldier "can smell differences in her [Kathryn's] body" 45 minutes before a seizure happens. This alerts Kathryn's nurse, enabling her to prepare and administer oxygen and rescue medications to her just in time. 

Besides his ability to anticipate Campbell’s physical needs, Soldier satisfies her emotional needs as well.

Photo Credit: Kelsey Crawford Kathy Beers

"On the rare occasions when she is in an unfamiliar place without him, you can definitely tell she is more anxious," Kim Campbell added to the publication. "He provides her with comfort, and I don't know what she would do without him."

Because Campbell and Soldier's bond is so strong, Timber Creek's yearbook committee wanted to immortalize it in print. "The Creek Yearbook Staff knows that Soldier is important to Kathryn, so he's important to all of us," Kathy Beers, the yearbook advisor, told A Plus via email. "If Soldier helps Kathryn to be safe, then he is a part of the family here at Timber Creek and deserves all the honor given to anyone who helps our students to be successful." 

That's the paw-esome reason why students — present and future — will be able to see Kathryn and Soldier's "student" pictures on the same page. "As long as Soldier and Kathryn are here, they will both be in the yearbook," Beers noted. "Our yearbook theme was 'Shine Brighter Together'... so if Soldier helps Kathryn shine her brightest, then he will always be a welcome member of our campus." She also added that the yearbook staff "would love to include" any other student's service animals in yearbooks to come.

(H/T: Yahoo! News)


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