This story is in honor of Edal the wonder dog, a service dog that changed the life of his owner Allen Parton.
I first learned about this amazing dog when Bo featured a story on him last year. His owner, who had a serious head injury received in the first Gulf War, was confined to a wheelchair. The injury also caused memory loss and terrible mood swings.
Golden Labrador Endal was crowned Dog of the Millennium and is known around the world for his heroics.
The 13-year-old canine, who lived in Clanfield, Hampshire, suffered a fit last week and was put to sleep on Friday with his owner by his side.
Mr Parton said: “He was a very special guy.
“When I got him he had a joint problem which manifested itself as arthritis and after having two fits last week it was decided to put him to sleep.”
Mr Parton said: “He truly was a wonder-dog and I regard him as saving my life.
“He will be missed but I really want to celebrate his life.”
Losing a dog under any circumstances is devastating. When you lose one that is not only your best friend, but also performs vital duties to help you get through each day, I cannot imagine what that would be like.
Parton wrote a book about his life with Endal, it was published in February of this year.
ENDAL, How One Extraordinary Dog Brought a Family Back from the Brink – tells the story of how a puppy who had nearly failed training as an assistance dog gave Allen a reason to live again, won the PDSA Gold Award and was voted Dog of the Millennium.
To learn more about Allen and Endal, and see some adorable pictures, visit them on their site. Our heartfelt condolencenes go out to the Parton family.