Boy in Coma Could Lose Dog That Comforts Him

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A 10-year-old German boy who has been in a coma since birth may lose access to the dog that has been by his side for six years because authorities say the dog is dangerous, but a supportive public is calling for the dog to stay with the boy.

Boy in Coma Could Lose Dog That Comforts Him

Dylan Gerzmehle was born in a persistent vegetative state. Although Dylan can't breathe without the assistance of medical equipment, he has found a best friend in Tascha, the 6-year-old Pit Bull who stays by Dylan's side.

"When Tascha lies by him, the boy becomes much calmer and his pulse and breathing relax," said Dylan's father, Eckhard Gerzmehle.

Problems began to arise for Tascha when the Gerzmehles moved from Berlin to Brandenburg two years ago. Brandenburg has strict policies forbidding Pit Bulls. Tascha might have gone unnoticed by authorities but for an incident in which she bit another dog. Now the state wants to confiscate Tascha, deeming her a dangerous animal.

As news of Tascha's situation spread, a growing number of supporters demanded that the dog be allowed to stay with Dylan, who clearly benefits from her presence. A petition on has accrued nearly 100,000 signatures as of Tuesday morning, and a Facebook page in support of Dylan and Tascha has almost 200,000 followers.

Bodo Oehme, the mayor of the town where the Gerzmehles live, has said that the law is very clear and leaves little room for negotiation, but that exceptions have been made in cases involving disabled people and their dogs.

"The decision over Tascha's future will ... soon be reached," Oehme said.


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That dog needs to stay by him. Maybe a fine for the dog bite but never take him away from a boy who needs him.

December 07 2013 at 7:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Most of these comments are negative. We do not know why the parents chose the path to keep there son alive. Yes I said alive. We do not know what there son brain activity is. Evidently there is some awareness because he responds to the dogs presents. We do not know what the believes of these people are, it could be against it not to do everything they can to save their sons life. No matter a persons believes we should not judge one another the way many are doing here. It is my believe that no one knows what they will do until they are faced with having to make a decision. I know from personal experience and try not to judge.

December 05 2013 at 3:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's nice that having the dog around makes things nicer for the boy but why in the world did these parents let this go on for so long? The story said point blank he was born that way. He has absolutely no quality of life. I find this cruel on the parents part.

December 04 2013 at 11:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
our florida

Germans. Usually very respectful of their 'hundes', you would hope they had learned their lesson about selective breeding. Is there a 'camp' for these innocents who are rounded up based on breeding?

December 04 2013 at 11:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I can't believe you people that are saying they should let their son die. That is their choice, while I may agree I wouldn't let my son live like that, oh by the way I was told my son would not live past day one and he is now over 30 so there is hope but he wasn't born this bad. I am glad that they are letting the dog stay but the dog is getting older and will be cranky. I hope they get the peace they need to let things happen like they should but when they decide it will be their choice.

December 04 2013 at 11:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Janka51, your ignorance about the breed is frightening. But I am old enough to know that there are too many stupid people like yourself in the world. As far as this child is concerned, if you are not a parent \"Shut Up\" - If you are, no one can make a moral judgement on your decisions.
The dog bit another dog, it didn\'t eat anyone. They should ban stupid people from making stupid comments !!!

December 04 2013 at 11:01 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

In all honesty where is the quality of life for this kid, i think the parents should have made a conscious decision at birth, knowing he would never get to leave his bed.

December 04 2013 at 10:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to nascar20155's comment

You can't believe every thing the doctors tell you. I had twin boys, born too early, one died and the one who lived we were told he'd be a vegtable and so on. Well I'm glad I didn't listen to the doctor, my so is 32 and happy. can't walk and now he can't move his arms anymore. But he is our joy and he's our life. My cats adore him and he laughs at them all the time, and he has every thing we can thing of to keep him happy warm and healthy. We take him out and about, he has his routines and where ever we go he has people there who enjoy seeing him, if he's under the weather I leave him home and every one askes where he is..he has his friends.

December 05 2013 at 12:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I respect the loyalty this dog has for the boy. And, I respect the concerns the community has regarding the breed. What I cannot respect are the decisions these parents have made regarding their son's well being and the only concern the community has is whether or not to allow the "forbidden" breed to stay with the boy.

As with most parent, these parents have a deep love for their son. This love has given them an inability to make sound, rational decisions regarding their child's well being. It's very clear that this love has separated them from reality. This is clearly demonstrated by the watch on the boys wrist.

This child was BORN in a persistent vegetative state. Life support was a desperate plea to hold on to something that was not meant to be held on to. Just because "we can" doesn't mean "we should", There is no quality of life and if "persistent vegetative state" is accurate, there isn't even dreams.

Move to a community that accepts the breed and love your dog. Love your son even more by letting him go.

December 04 2013 at 10:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

How long will these parents keep their child alive by artificial means? IMHO, this child should have been allowed to pass on shortly after birth. What happens if both parents die during the care for him? Who then will take care of him?

December 04 2013 at 10:24 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

I cannot believe what I am reading here, let him go in peace etc. how sad a bunch of comments. I just want to know which one of you would disconnect your own child if they where in this position, not many I bet. If the dog gives him a little peace, let him be and visit with his patient. This is Germany, I am sure the dog is fixed and now calm. I don't know what the law is in Germany on a patient like this, but death by disconnecting the apparatus, I'll have to ask my cousin who lives in Berlin.

December 04 2013 at 10:23 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
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