A super dog from Fleetwood helped save his owners life by pressing an emergency button that connects to Progress Housing Group’s Progress Lifeline service, when she fell ill at home.

After falling out of her wheelchair and knocking herself unconscious in her back garden, Carol Willacy says she can’t thank Progress Lifeline and her assistance dog Billy enough for saving her.

Carol (45) has mobility problems as a result of severe arthritis and spinal damage. She also suffers from extreme fatigue and uses a wheelchair to get around.

Due to her condition, Carol decided to train her pet dog Billy to be a support dog, to provide practical assistance with tasks that she found difficult, or impossible to perform.

Since his training with the Charity Support Dogs, in Sheffield, Billy has been able to help Carol with emptying the washing machine, opening and closing doors, taking off her shoes and coat and finding items that she asks for- including keys, her phone and the television remote. He can also press an emergency button which connects him to Progress Lifeline’s 24 hour Control Centre, if Caroline cannot raise the alarm herself.

I was out in the garden when I started to struggle with my breathing, and fell out of my wheelchair and hit my head. It was a very cold early morning so no one was really around and I wasn’t expecting any visitors. If it hadn’t been for the falls detector I was wearing, and my dog Billy, who had gone into the house to press my alarm, I don’t know what might have happened. Carol

Carol’s falls detector alerted Progress Lifeline’s 24 hour Control Centre at the time of the accident whilst clever Billy ran back inside and pushed the emergency alarm button that he had been trained to press if Carol needed help.

On the alarm being raised, Progress Lifeline’s Control Centre staff sent out one their Emergency Mobile Responders to Caroline’s house to check if she was ok. On arrival, they located Carol who was still unconscious on the floor and called for an ambulance.

I can’t thank everyone enough. The service really is a lifeline for me, having both devices, plus the invaluable support from Billy, has given me so much more reassurance. Having this level of support, allows me to live safely and independently in my own home. Carol

Progress Lifeline provides personal alarm support in the home to more than 10,000 people across Lancashire. All alarm equipment is linked to the Progress Lifeline control centre which provides emergency assistance 24 hour, 365 days a year.

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