This fundraiser closed about 1 month ago
Hope is our fearless eight year old girl who has Down syndrome and
ADHD. She is sweet and gentle, loves animals and babies, and is very
busy. She is inquisitive, impulsive, and like all
children she wants to do what the older kids are doing.
Unfortunately, Hope is also an escape artist, taking opportunities to
go on walks alone whenever they arise. This tendency of her's has
terrified us on multiple occasions. She has frightened the staff at her
former school in Louisiana, which once went on shut down because staff
could not locate her. Regardless of what we try, she finds the tiniest
of opportunities to wander, and because of this we have found her in all
types of odd places. We continue to try a variety of locks, alarms and
even a locator to help prevent these escapades. The locator stymied us;
taking too long to register her signal as our fears were escalating. We
have found that we can generally find her faster without it. The longer
she is gone the more fearful we are that she will end up in a dangerous
Hope is very loving and seeks cuddling, and has great difficulty
falling asleep alone. On the rare occasions we are able to get her
asleep in her own bed, it is not uncommon for her to get up in the wee
hours of the morning and play in the dark or join us in our bed.
Fortunately, she has not escaped the house during these nocturnal play
We learned about 4 Paws for Ability during an online search following
one of Hope's adventures. We had found Hope in an empty neighbor's home
and then immediately and tearfully contacted Karen at 4 Paws to learn
if a dog could help. Thankfully the answer was "yes".
The service dog would be trained to track her, allowing us to find
her quickly in the instances that she does go exploring. Her ability to
slip away in large crowds would be eliminated when tethered to her dog,
allowing us all more peace of mind. We could begin exposing Hope to
places we currently avoid due to the stress levels involved.. The
service dog could also give her comfort when needed. The dog can snuggle
with her and eventually get her to sleep in her own bed on a nightly
Like any parent, we want to give our daughter an abundant life, and protect her in every way possible.
It will cost 4 Paws for Ability $22,000 to train a multipurpose dog
for Hope. We are committed to raise at least $13,000 so that Hope may
receive a service dog. If you can help us with a tax- deductible
donation, please visit 4 Paws Donation Page, or mail a check with Hope's
name on the memo line to: 4 Paws for Ability, In Honor of Hope
Middlestetter, 253 Dayton Ave., Xenia, Ohio 45385.