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Lilly Supports Research to Determine What a Dog's Nose Knows About People with Diabetes and Severe Hypoglycemia
Date:7/30/2012

single alert dog can cost up to $25,000 or more.[viii] But, thanks to donations from public and private donors, plus hours of volunteer time from employees like those at Lilly, ICAN provides trained dogs to qualified families for a one-time fee of $1,300 for the life of the dog.[ix]

At ICAN, dogs are trained by carefully screened inmates at the Indiana Women's Prison over a two year period. Dogs are taught skills such as picking up objects from the floor, opening doors, tugging clothes off, and helping with balance/mobility issues. At roughly 8 months old, they also start working on the diabetes alert training protocol using ICAN's proprietary method. Many of these dogs are then exposed to real-life situations by Lilly Diabetes employees during work time hours over a period of two to three weeks. Through this process dogs practice the skills learned such as walking without pulling or staying in a "sit" position during greetings with new people. ICAN is accredited by Assistance Dogs International, a coalition of organizations that train and place assistance dogs.

This unique arrangement is part of Lilly's commitment to the organization and serving people with diabetes in the local community. Currently, seven employees are trained to work with ICAN canines, and at any one time up to three employees have dogs actively training at Lilly. Each volunteer employee participates in a series of classes where they learn to handle the dogs, and then are asked to commit to a minimum of six additional classes per year for continuing education.

However, that can be a challenge, because while dogs in training thrive on routine, Lilly operates a mobile work environment – on any given day, an employee may sit at a different work station among a variety of co-workers. The company has employed this philosophy to promote more active collaboration.

To marry the two, Lilly Diabetes volunteers proactively created an additional level of support so that th
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SOURCE Eli Lilly and Company
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