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Assistance dog provides learning situation for all

Zane is friendly and happy. He canvasses the halls of Perrysburg Junior High like an old-timer, even though he's only been there a little more than a month.

The period of adjustment is over - for him and for the school. Zane lounges on the floor as if the place is home. Students and staff know better than to bother Zane, at least when he's working.

That temptation is a tough one to avoid, too, because Zane is popular, gregarious, and handsome.

But it's important because Zane, a two-year-old black Labrador retriever, is an assistance dog, the first Perrysburg schools have had.

He assists a boy named Zac Zies, a sixth-grader afflicted with a rare genetic disease called Friedreich's ataxia. It causes muscle weakness and loss of coordination.

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