Chattanooga firefighters help "4 Paws for Noah" - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Chattanooga firefighters help "4 Paws for Noah"

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Firefighters are always ready to go for the second when someone in the community needs them, but now the Chattanooga Fire Department is helping one of their own to adopt "4 Paws for Noah."

It's Friday afternoon at Stellar Therapy Services. That's where we find Noah Phillips, 4, as he catches up on a little reading. 

These tasks may seem easy for us, but for Noah, they're critical. That's because it's hard for Noah to express himself or understand messages from others. 

Noah is autistic and sometimes struggles with loud noises around him. 

"Things that may be annoying to us are extremely hard for him to handle. He carries earmuffs around everywhere he goes so that if things start getting noise, he can put his earmuffs on," Noah's father Skyler Phillips said. 

Speech and food therapy give Noah the tools to live an everyday life. Noah's parents hope to take it a step further through a therapy dog. 

"It's not real wide spread, there's not a whole lot of them out there, there's not a lot of companies that do that. But once we started reading about it, we realized this is really something that could be beneficial. This could really help him," Phillips added. 

Phillips says a therapy dog would not only help with Noah's anxiety, but also give his parents some peace of mind. 

"A lot of these children have elopement issues or bolting issues, they just take off and you can actually tether the dog to them," he said. 

A dog will give Noah a kind of independence he's never had before. 

The Chattanooga Fire Department is stepping up to help raise the $15,000 for the therapy dog from 4 Paws for Ability, a non-profit out of Ohio. Once the Phillips family have the funds, it will take about a year and half to train the dog before it can come home with Noah. 

They're holding a pancake breakfast Saturday from 8 am- 1 pm at Station 1 at 218 E. Main Street. Cost is $5 donation per plate. 

 For more about Noah's story, click HERE.

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