Aiden Heath was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at the age of four.
Devastating as the diagnosis was, Aiden saw a glimmer of hope in it all, in the form of a diabetic alert dog.
Specially trained diabetic alert dogs are able to sense when their owner's blood sugar is low or high, and alert them before it reaches a dangerous level. Aiden's mother, Jenni Heath, further explains:
“They can sense it twenty minutes to thirty minutes before the blood meter actually tells you that you're low.”
Unfortunately, these canines are not cheap. According to ABC News, the dogs aren't covered by insurance, and they cost about $15,000.
So four years ago, Jenni Heath told Aiden to start saving his pennies. And that is exactly what he's been doing:
By April of this year, now eight-year-old Aiden had saved about $6,000. After ABC World News Tonight covered his story, donations started rolling. In less than 24 hours, Aiden had surpassed his $15,000 goal, raising more than $20,000.
The Heath family was overwhelmed by the support.
With the money, Jenni was able to pay for Aiden's diabetic alert dog, a chocolate lab named Angel. A proud Jenni tells ABC News:
“He had this goal and it's finally coming true, so when she gets here to Vermont...that's going to be a big moment for this family.”
Now, after six months of training in Nevada, Angel has finally arrived to the Heath home. Jenni Heath says her son is “over the moon” happy.
Aiden hopes he can now donate to other families who are in need of a service dog, too.
“Every penny counts,” he says.