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Rescue Dog Becomes Local Farmer’s Best Friend

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CALDWELL, Mo. -- The relationship between a farmer and his working dog is special, but the one between Bruce Trammell and his dog Odie brings new meaning to man's best friend.

"He'll sleep in the house with us," Trammel said. "He will go everywhere I go. He's even going to church Sunday." Trammell said about his new service dog Odie.

They've only known each other for two days, but the bond was immediate.

"I trust him all the way, 100 percent," said Trammell.

Odie is bringing new life to Trammell's world.  Four years ago, an accident with a trackhoe left Trammell with a brain injury.  He suffers from short-term memory loss, migraines and Meniere's Disease. Trammell lost his independence.

"I went through a bad stage the first year of depression and what I could do and what I couldn't do," he said.

Now, thanks to Jackie Allenbrand and her PHARM Dog Program, which stands for Pets Helping Agriculture in Rural Missouri, Trammell is back at it.

"It's very freeing," he said.

"As soon as he got the dog, his whole posture changed,"  Allenbrand added.  "And he told me he just felt like he was falling in love all over again."

It's a fitting love. Rescued by trainer Renee Riegel, Odie is no rescuing Trammell with new found freedom.

" Each and every time I see somebody's whole world change,"Riegel said. "Somebody's whole life change forever you know. You can't put a price tag on that."

Odie has been trained to help Trammell walk with Ease. He can also fetch any item Trammell points to with a lazer.  He will also alert for help if Trammell falls or is in need of help.

"It's really a dream come true, really," Trammel said.

The Pharm Dog Project is supported by AgrAbility and is always looking for help. Right now the program has only 500 dollars and a prayers says Allenbrand. With four months of training and many people involved, Trammell's service dog alone will cost around $5,000.

For more information on how you can get involved with this cause you can visit www.Meril.org or http://www.agrability.missouri.edu/

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