The Impact of Autism Service Dogs

Onward with Rosie O’Donnell: Autism Service Dogs

Guide Dogs of America | Tender Loving Canine’s Autism service dog graduate, Rosie O’Donnell, shares her experience with the nonprofit and what autism service dogs can do, not only for the child with autism but for the entire family.

Learning about these service dogs who worked with children with autism, it was quickly realized that the child themself is not the dog’s handler, so, Rosie became the designated adult, the ‘Primary Handler’ for her kiddo. Her guest, Kaylie Schmidt, is the volunteer autism service dog coach, who along with the Guide Dog of America | Tender Loving Canine trainers, worked with Rosie and the other autism mom during the 10 day in-campus hands on training period. An experience Rosie calls life changing.

“Today’s show is going to be all about my experience with Guide Dogs of America (Tender Loving Canines). I can’t even begin to put into words just how changed I am by the experience of these people, what they do, and what effect it has on the lives of those people they are helping,” says Rosie.

“Once I found it, I was like, this, this is it, Like, this is the thing that we have to do. This is going to make a difference. And I had no idea the impact it was going to have.”

“I find myself brought to tears almost every day, two or three times a day, by the change that I see in my child, by
the letters I’m getting from the teachers and the counselors in the school saying this was the greatest week we’ve had,” states Rosie.

About Rosie & Kuma

Rosie is an American comedian, actress, author, and the mom of an autistic eleven-year-old named Clay. Clay was diagnosed at 3 years old. Clay is the youngest of five children and is looking forward to their autism dog.

Rosie O’Donnell & Autism Service Dog Kuma