Alida Knobloch plays on the playground and takes walks in the park like any other 2-year-old, but she has to carry around an oxygen tank with her at all times because of a rare disease called neuroendocrine hyperplasia of infancy (NEHI), The Walton Tribune
Her parents know that she will always have to go through life with a tube trailing her, but wanted to find a way to make it easier for her. Their solution came in a playful young dog named Mr. Gibbs, who has been trained since puppyhood to be a service dog.
"We're trying to provide some independence for her," father Aaron Knobloch told the news outlet.
Mr. Gibbs wears a vest that has pockets on either side for small oxygen tanks and follows the toddler everywhere she needs to go.
"He's still learning, as we just got him a couple of weeks ago," Knobloch said. "He's very much a puppy in some ways, playful and gangly. But when he wears the vest, he's all business and does really well, even in public."
According to the Mother Nature Network
, service dogs do not have to wear vests to be legitimate, but they must wear a leash or a tether of some kind when they accompany their human partners.