HE'S warmth and happiness wrapped in white fur and destined to be a rock.
Meet Murray, a 10 month old Smart Pup assistance dog in training.
The Johnstone family of Maleny met him this morning and discovered that he was going to be theirs.
Murray will fill a dual role with the Johstones.
Ella Johnstone, 8, has high functioning autism and is prone to hypersensitivity and acute anxiety.
Her mother, Joanne, experiences chronic pain and fatigue as a result of contracting Lyme disease overseas years ago.
Ella's father, David, cares for both his wife and daughter.
The Johnstones registered for a Smart Pup at the suggestion of Ella's paediatrician and have been fundraising to get together the $20,000 to cover his cost.
They were given a surprise introduction to their dog, Murray, at a fundraising promotion at Cotton Tree this morning.
Ella was clearly taken with her new friend.
"I like Murray very much," she said, with her hands resting on his soft white fur.
The Johnstones hope Murray will be the warning signal they sometimes cannot see and the rock that they sometimes cannot be for their daughter.
"With Ella, it will give her more freedom with security being out because she can be tethered to him," Mrs Johnston said.
"She has hypersensitivity and touching for her can be uncomfortable, so with Murray, she can have the freedom of being out without having to hang on to me."
Mr Johnston said Murray would hopefully be able to warn if Ella was becoming tense or about to have a meltdown, and perhaps calm her by sitting on her lap.nmu
Murray can already sit, shake, and give a "high five". Mrs Johnstone hopes he might even fetch and carry a few things for her if she is unable to.
Smart Pups trainer Leesa Heiniger said Murray's training would be fine tuned over the next couple of months and he would hopefully be ready to go to the Johnstones in April.
They have already raised about half the money they need to cover his cost.
They hope to raise more with a raffle being drawn on March 26, and by selling gift cards featuring Ella's artwork.
The Johnstones have also assembled a stack of items and services to be auctioned, and an auctioneer to sell them, but need the help of a social butterfly to organise a fundraising auction.
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