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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 June 2006, 14:19 GMT 15:19 UK
Dog praised for life-saving call
Beagle (file photo)
Dogs such as beagles can be trained to perform complex tasks
A US dog has won an award for saving her owner's life by dialling a phone number that alerted emergency services to her owner's diabetic seizure.

Belle the beagle triggered a call to an ambulance crew by biting on her owner, Kevin Weaver's, mobile phone.

The dog was trained to detect potential diabetic attacks by licking and sniffing Mr Weaver's nose to check his blood sugar levels and pawing him.

Belle resorted to dialling for help when Mr Weaver fell unconscious.

The dog used her teeth to press the number nine key, which the phone was programmed to interpret as a "911" call to emergency services.

Ambulance workers answered the phone and, hearing nothing but barking at the end of the line, rushed to the caller's house in the city of Ocoee in Florida state.

The dog is the first animal to receive the Vita Wireless Samaritan Award.

"I am convinced that if Belle wasn't with me that morning, I wouldn't be alive today," Mr Weaver said.

"Belle is more than just a life-saver. She's my best friend."


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