Last week, authorities in Germany were calling for a Staffordshire Bull Terrier named Tascha to be put down because she bit a neighbor’s dog in a curbside scuffle. Under breed-specific legislation, Staffies are classified as a fighting dog in the state of Brandenburg, where she lives, so because of the incident with the other dog, Tascha’s owners were told that she must move out or be euthanized.
But Tascha’s family fought the order, not only because they love their dog, but because they say she is the “chief carer” for their son, Dylan, who is in a coma. Dylan’s parents, Eckhard and Barbara, say that Tascha calms Dylan: “Whenever the dog is with him, our son responds . . . His breathing becomes quieter, his heart rate falls. That could only be because of this dog.”
Tascha has been caring for Dylan for six years, going into his room every morning, pulling back his blanket with her teeth, licking his feet, and snuggling up to his face. She stays by his side all day long.
German dog lovers rallied to the cause, starting a Facebook page that now has more than 200,000 “Likes,” and starting a petition drive. And it worked! Authorities now say Dylan’s parents can de-register Tascha in Brandenburg and re-register her in Berlin, where Staffordshire Terriers are allowed. Tascha will also begin training to become a certified therapy and companion dog.