North West Wales

Diabetes detection dog Jess is boy's 'best friend'

Diabetes dog, Jess, with six-year-old Jac
Image caption Springer spaniel Jess is able to accompany six-year-old Jac as a medical alert dog

A dog trained to detect changes in her young diabetic master's blood sugar levels is a lifesaver, the boy's mother has said.

Springer spaniel Jess retrieves a testing kit if she smells that six-year-old Jac, from Gwynedd, has blood sugar spikes or dips.

The four-year-old dog was self-trained by the family and is now an accredited medical detection dog.

Jac's mother, Emma Williams, said Jess was her son's "best friend".

Image caption Jess could become one of about 60 medical detection dogs placed in the UK

Jess has been with the Williams family at their home near Porthmadog since she was a pup.

But when Jac was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, his parents decided to have her trained to detect the glucose levels in his breath.

Jac's mother said: "She's just like a pet but she is always working. Her nose is always going, she alerts whenever she senses something going [on] with Jac.

"He'll tell you she is his best friend and she does save his life".

Image caption Jac is accompanied by Jess the dog when he goes out

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