GLADSTONE, Ore. (KOIN) — Skyler Losson has played soccer for years.
It’s a way for the 7th grader to interact with others, something that can often be difficult for kids like him who suffer from autism and epileptic seizures.
“People would antagonize him and say, ‘do you want to fight?'” Kaley Zadwarny, Skyler’s best friend, told KOIN 6 News. “I’d whisper to Skyler to ignore them.”
While Kaley works hard to protect her friend, Skyler’s parents have been told a therapy dog trained for autism and epilepsy could be a great addition to his life.
“Before the seizures, I guess… the person puts out a scent, warning the dog that a seizure is coming,” Skyler’s mom Rebecca Losson explained. “So the dog will know before the person will know.”
While the benefits of having a therapy dog are indisputable, the Losson family says the issue is the cost.
Therapy dogs are expensive; they start at $5,400. It’s money Skyler’s family doesn’t have.
“He doesn’t know who’s friend, who’s foe,” Skyler’s dad Marvin Losson said. “So the dog will guide him, let him know if it’s a safe situation to be into or not.”
Now, the Losson family is working to raise money so Skyler can afford a furry companion for guidance and protection in life-threatening situations.
Many local businesses in the Gladstone and Oregon City areas have donation jars to help Skyler raise money.
Businesses accepting donations on behalf of the Losson family:
- Baskin Robbin’s, 19510 McLoughlin Blvd. Gladstone, Oregon
- Heavenly Donuts, 19500 McLoughlin Blvd. Gladstone, Oregon
- Pizza Hut, 19660 McLoughlin Blvd. Gladstone, Oregon
- Taco Bell, 19795 McLoughlin Blvd. Gladstone, Oregon
- Teriyaki Grill, 19660 McLoughlin Blvd. Gladstone, Oregon
- Burgerville, 19119 SE McLoughlin Blvd. Milwaukie, Oregon
- Little Caesar’s Pizza, 17038 SE McLoughlin Blvd. Milwaukie, Oregon
- Round Table Pizza, 16550 SE McLoughlin Blvd. Milwaukie, Oregon
- Flying Pie Pizza, 16691 SE McLoughlin Blvd. Portland, Oregon
- Taco Bell, 16300 SE McLoughlin Blvd. Portland, Oregon
Participating businesses will be accepting donations until November 30. Also, donations can be made at any US Bank branch in the account “Skyler Losson Service Alert Dog.”
If you would like to donate to the Losson family directly, click here.