Originally reported by Sharon L. Peters for USA Today on January 10, 2011
COLUMBIA, Mo., Jan. 12 (UPI) A Missouri college student with an extreme allergy to gluten gets help staying healthy from her hardworking gluten-detecting service dog Elias. Hollie Scott, 22, suffers from such a severe case of celiac disease she can be ill for weeks if she eats food that has simply been sliced with a knife used previously to carve something containing minimal gluten content, USA Today reported.Elias, Scott's 2-year-old Beauceron, goes everywhere with the first-year student in the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Missouri. After gluten-detection training in Slovenia last year, Elias can now detect and warn Scott away from anything containing gluten, hot or cold, in all its many manifestations, the newspaper reported Tuesday. Scott was diagnosed with celiac disease two years ago after having spent much of her high school years "in and out of hospitals."She's now acutely vigilant about checking labels and trying to avoid cross-contamination. Celiac disease "brings a whole new level of stress" to the very notion of mealtime, Scott says, and the help Elias provides is "comforting." And as if protecting Scott was enough, Elias is a show champion too, a former American Kennel Club Grand Champion -- the first Beauceron to win that title -- and will compete in the Westminster Dog Show in New York City next month.
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