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Hero puppy saves teen's life as he was having a stroke that would have left him 'nonfunctional'
Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Amanda C Tanner

Hero puppy saves teen's life as he was having a stroke that would have left him 'nonfunctional'

A one-year-old border collie named Axel saved his 17-year-old owner's life

They say dogs are a man's best friend, and this story proves it.

The Tanner Family from Spring, Texas, went to sleep as usual on Friday, August 25, only to be woken up by their dog, Axel, in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The one-year-old border collie was pawing at his owners Amanda and Danies 'more than normal' and Danies eventually got up and went downstairs with the pooch, presuming that he was wanting to be let out.

But Axel wasn't interested in going outside, instead he directed his owner to the bedroom door of 17-year-old Gabriel.

Axel refused to move from the teenager's door, sparking Danies to check on his son - which is when he realised something was wrong.

Gabriel was slurring his words and said he couldn't feel the right side of his body, so his parents rushed him off to the emergency room.

Little did they know that their athletic and otherwise healthy son was having a stroke; something which is extremely rare in young people.

Most strokes happen to people aged 65 or over, with only 3.7 percent to 8.5 percent of all strokes occuring in those aged below 45, as per the National Library of Medicine.

Gabriel was in hospital for 2 weeks after his stroke.
Facebook/Amanda C Tanner

Noting the low chances of her teenage son suffering a stroke, Gabriel's mother Amanda told the Daily Mail: "I would have never thought a teenager could have a stroke and would have thought he needed more sleep if anything had Axel not alerted us to the issue."

With Axel's heroic efforts in mind, Sabih Effendi, a neurosurgeon who treated Gabriel, has credited the family's pet for making a huge difference to the outcome of Gabriel's stroke.

“Without that early notification of him getting to the hospital, you really would have had really permanent deficits that would have made him really nonfunctional and unable to live life,” Effendi told The Washington Post.

He added to TODAY: "When somebody’s acutely having a stroke, the neurons are dying.

"[...] If he was not found and another three or four hours went by, there would have been more and more and more brain injury."

One-year-old Axel has been hailed a hero.
Facebook/Amanda C Tanner

Prior to his stroke, Gabriel said he had a headache but simply went to sleep not thinking much of it.

But when he was woken up by his dad, the 17-year-old couldn't lift up his right arm or grip onto Danies' arm.

Following Gabriel's hospital admission, it was found that the stroke was a result of a tear of an artery that delivers blood to the brain.

The tear was spontaneous and Gabriel was put on blood thinners to help.

He also went on to have physical, occupational and speech therapy.

By September 4, he'd regained mobility in his right arm and was discharged form hospital a few days later.

In a Facebook post at the time, Amanda said that her son was to 'continue with therapy 3 times a week but now with mom and dad caring for him 24/7 from home'.

Topics: News, US News, Dogs, Animals, Health, Texas