Saturday, September 8, 2012

Canine 4 Kennan

I promised to blog about this, and kept putting it off. My procrastination is not a measure of the importance of this post, but rather, just me.

So there's this family at church, the Browers - Delmer and Ann Michelle. Their children are adopted (yay adoption!). When you adopt a child, you don't know what you are going to get. Any child is a mystery, but adopted children are more so, because the medical history of the parents is usually unknown, or sometimes incomplete.

This is what happened with the Browers.

Their second son, Kennan, was adopted as a baby. He had some issues that they dealt with, or if they had questions, they were told it was "terrible twos" or something that kids grow out of. But Kennan didn't grow out of the behaviors, and continued to have problems.

His profile said that his birth mother didn't drink or do drugs during her pregnancy with him. After years of problems with Kennan, Ann Michelle learned about fetal alcohol syndrome and the effects on the baby. She and Delmer researched it and then consulted the pediatrician. They also contacted the caseworker from the adoption and asked him to find out if there was any information on whether Kennan's birth mother drank or used drugs.

As it turns out, she did drink (they don't know how much or how often) and also used cocaine during her pregnancy.

Kennan has been diagnosed with a slew of disorders and conditions (more info here with photos of the results of some of his bad days):

He is now listed as having ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder),  SPD/SID (Sensory Processing/Integration Disorder),  DBD (Disruptive Behavior Disorder) and an unspecified Learning Disorder with the probability of an FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder – more specific ARND (Alcohol Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder)).

Ann Michelle and Delmer are raising funds for a service dog to help Kennan learn to modify his behaviors (calming effect) and head off or lessen meltdowns. They believe this will help their son in many ways.

There is a 5K fun run/walk (today) in Fort Dodge. It costs $25 to participate. Signups start at 7:30 a.m. at Rosedale Rapids Aquatic Center. I'm planning to help with signups and wherever else I am needed. If you can't participate but want to donate, there are links to donate at the 4 Paws For Ability site, and on Ann Michelle's blog, Canine4Kennan (look on the right side for the FirstGiving widget.

Here's a Messenger article about the 5K, with Google map and route map: Family needs funds to get 4 Paws for Ability service dog

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