Loyal dog helping disabled owner with chronic pain receives a diploma at graduation

Brittany Hawley, a 25-year-old who suffers from chronic pain, saw her service dog, Griffin, receive an honorary degree for helping her get her Master's degree.

The 4-year-old dog was right by Hawley's side on Saturday, December 15, 2018, at Clarkson University, in New York, and couldn't have had a better time.

The handler took to her Facebook account to pay her own tribute to Griffin for always being there for her for the past two years and claiming to be excited for the adventures ahead of them.

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The pooch aided Hawley through her degree in occupational therapy by going with her to every class and by assisting her at an internship at Fort Bragg, a military base where they helped soldiers with mobility impairments and psychosocial disorders.

"Hawley has to deal with anxiety and depression on a daily basis and she couldn't possibly have handled it all without Griffin's help."

Seeing the New York school recognize Griffin's 'extraordinary effort, steadfast commitment and diligent dedication to the well-being and student success' of his handler was very special to Hawley.


According to her, Griffin is her partner in crime and helps her by opening doors, fetching her phone and turning on the lights. Not only that, he provides her with invaluable emotional support.

Aside from suffering from chronic pain, Hawley has to deal with anxiety and depression on a daily basis and she couldn't possibly have handled it all without Griffin's help.


The 4-year-old canine was reportedly trained through a program called Paws4Prisons, in which inmates prepare dogs for their high-level assistance jobs.

Hawley explained that most dogs were scared of her wheelchair but that Griffin immediately jumped into her lap and started licking her face. That was when she knew she had found her best friend.


Dogs are amazing, and just like Griffin, there are many four-legged heroes around the world. Norman, a  blind former shelter dog, is one of those heroes.

One day, his owner took him to the beach, and despite being blind, he managed to save a girl, Lisa, from drowning by hearing her screams. Norman immediately jumped in the water and swam to her.

But he was disoriented, so the owner told Lisa to call Norman by his name so he could find her. It worked like a charm and Norman was able to guide the girl back to safety, saving her life.

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