PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. - Sammy, 6, has spent most of her life in the house with her mom. She was unable to do the things that most young kids would normally do, like go outside and play with friends or even head off to school. That will now change because Samantha has met her guardian angel.
Samantha is now in Colorado training with her new service dog. It is a dog that she was able to acquire after so many in our community raised the money she needed for the dog and his training.
Sammy and her mother, Allison Feeley, left for Colorado last Friday, but only met their pup on Sunday, and Monday has been a full day of training.
The dog, named Theo, will allow Samantha the freedom to do things like go to school, something she has been unable to do this year because of her severe allergies.
Samantha is deadly allergic to things like peanuts, dairy and eggs, so much so that she herself will tell you, "I could die in just 3 minutes."
Her mother paints a lonely picture of the first 6 years of Sam's life.
"We are very much confined to the house or the doctor's office. I mean she doesn't get to go out. She doesn't get to do things like your typical 6 year old would want to do," Allison said.
But with Theo watching over her and alerting her to anything that might cause a deadly allergic reaction, the hope is that Sammy will get a new lease on life.
Sammy explained Theo will, "tell me what's safe and what's not safe. And it will let me play with friends."
For mom, it is a dream for her daughter, a chance to open up a whole new world.
"We look at the world as a very scary, very life threatening place," Allison explains.
"And this dog is going to say, 'Yah know what? that slide is ok. She can go down that slide. she can go have some fun.'"
Samantha and her mother will train with the dog for 10 days at Angel Service Dogs in Colorado Springs, and then return home with Theo.