'Dogs Can Help in Great Ways': Autism Service Dog Calms Owner Having Panic Attack

Marley the autism service dog calmed his owner in New South Wales when she began having a panic attack at her home, a video posted January 19 shows.

Marley, a one-year-old border collie–kelpie mix whose therapeutic qualities have previously gone viral, can be seen giving his owner persistent affection and a hug as a means to stop harmful behavior in this new footage.

The owner of the dog, Hayley, who prefers not to give out her full name, told Storyful, “In this video, Marley is stopping me from harming myself during a sensory episode … which includes hitting myself and scratching myself. Marley is trained to interrupt the harmful behavior.”

Hayley also explained that Marley is applying pressure to her in order to help ground her. Marley will also help get her to a safe place when she is having an attack.

Hayley previously told Storyful about life before having Marley. “Living with high-functioning autism was hard," she said. “I grew up bullied, I grew up struggling majorly with school, I hardly had friends as I was that weird kid. Marley has given me so much sense of independence and he has changed my life. I want to spread awareness of autism service dogs.”

Hayley shared the video to the Dogspotting Facebook group saying, “This was … a bit more severe than the others. But I wanna show people that dogs can help in great ways.” Credit: Hayley via Storyful