The alarm clock dog: Specially-trained pet gives sleeping sickness teen a face-licking whenever she drops off


Pooch protector: Kelly's dog Theo is trained to wake her when she collapses

A teenager who suffers from the sleep illness narcolepsy has had her life transformed by a specially-trained dog.

Kelly Sears, 19, from Chadwell Heath, Essex regularly falls asleep without any warning and is often let with nasty cuts and bruises as she tumbles to the ground.

But the teenager's life has dramatically improved thanks to a Cocker Spaniel called Theo who has been taught to lick her neck and face until she wakes up.

Theo was given to Kelly by the charity Medical Detection Dogs and is the only one in Europe specially trained to deal with a narcoleptic person.

The attentive two-year-old dog has become Kelly's "shadow" in the past two months and is with her every moment of the day and night.

Before she had Theo, Kelly would regularly be out for the count for minutes but now she is woken by a loving lick after just a few seconds.

Out and about: Kelly says she feels far more confident leaving the house now she has Theo with her

Theo has even be trained to go to fetch help if Kelly hurts herself when she falls asleep - getting the attention of passers by and then leading them back to his owner.

His amazing abilities have given the A-level student a new lease of life and more confidence to go out on her own.

Theo first came to the attention of the Milton Keynes-based charity after it emerged he could recognise signs that someone was about to have an epileptic seizure.

Staff from the charity are now working to identify signals Kelly is about to have an episode so they can then teach Theo to recognise them and warn her before she drops off.

Kelly said: 'Theo has been amazing, he has made a huge difference to my life.

'I can go out on my own with him and feel confident that I will be alright if something happens. And when I am out now I am not constantly worrying about falling asleep.

source: dailymail