TODAY   |  October 13, 2013

Aimee Copeland meets her new service dog

The Georgia graduate student who lost all four limbs to a flesh-eating bacteria last year came one step closer to regaining her independence with a special new friend. NBC’s Michelle Franzen reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> this past year is one of triumph for a young georgia woman who battled back after losing all four limbs to a flesh eating bacteria . this weekend she came one step closer to regaining her independence. here is michelle fran sken.

>> i'm excited and nervous.

>> reporter: after a year of waiting, amy copeland has a new companion, and that companion comes with a wet nose and wagging tail.

>> it's great to know she's going to be mine.

>> reporter: the labradoodle service dog will remind her when to take her medications and even fetch them for her. trainers gave the dog a year of intensive and specialized training.

>> she has to learn not only to bring things and pick up dropped things, but she also had to learn what things are, like what a towel is a, what a bottle of juice is. so we had to teach her all of that plus object recognition.

>> reporter: she officially became amy 's at a fund-raiser that included a petting zoo , music festival and 5k race . it's been over a year since the georgia grad student was injured in a zip lining accident and nearly died after the gash in her leg became infected with a rare flesh eating bacteria . doctors had to am pew tate her left leg, right foot and both hands.

>> i'm so excited. it looks great.

>> reporter: this spring amy received a set of high-tech prosthetic hands. now bell will add to that freedom.

>> it will make it easier for me in the short term making up things off the ground and also in the long term provide companionship.

>> reporter: and give her love along the way. for today, michelle franzen , nbc news, new york.