Blind, deaf shelter pup and guide dog brother are inseparable

Blind and deaf shelter pup and her guide dog brother are inseparable – now up for adoption

All animals are special and unique in their own way, but we think we’ve found a pair who stand out even so.

Star and Denver belonged to a litter of puppies who were abandoned along with their mom in Louisiana back in 2020.

The pups were taken to the Helen Woodward Animal Center in Rancho Santa Fe, California, where staff soon realized Star was different.

Though the rest of her siblings played and did all the usual things one might expect of an excitable pup, Star stood alone.

Staff at the center came to understand that she was deaf and almost blind.

Credit: Helen Woodward Animal Center

And yet she wasn’t completely alone.

Staff watched as one of her siblings, Denver, kept her company and acted as a guide dog while the disabled youngster used her other sense to get around and adjust to her new environment.

“It’s really extraordinary,” Dora Dahlke, manager of adoption services at Helen Woodward, explained in a press release. “We never stop learning from animals.”

Blind, Deaf Puppy Relies on Sibling to Explore World

Puppy siblings Star and Denver have a bond quite unlike anything we’ve seen before. Star is deaf and nearly blind, and Denver acts as his sister’s guiding star.Someone dumped a mother dog and her eight newborn puppies in rural Louisiana. A loving family found them, decided to keep Mom and asked one of our rescue partners to find homes for the babies. Already overburdened with puppies, our partner contacted Helen Woodward Animal Center for help. We jumped into action, making arrangements to transport the litter and 31 other pups 1,900 miles to San Diego for a second chance.Upon arrival, our team soon realized that Star had special needs. Deaf and almost completely blind, this 3-month-old Terrier blend was learning to use her other senses to navigate the world. While the rest of Star's littermates frolicked without her, her brother Denver kept a protective eye. Choosing Star as his main playmate, the two were rarely apart and when separated, Denver would come running back to love on Star and let her know he was there.Star and Denver are now ready to find a forever home – together. They will be available for adoption this Wednesday, February 26! Visit animalcenter.org/adopt-a-pet for details on adopting a pet. If you can’t adopt, please consider clicking the donate button so we can save more pets with special needs.

Posted by Helen Woodward Animal Center on Monday, February 24, 2020

As per reports, Denver and Star were rarely apart now and could only be adopted together – and for good reason.

In June 2020, the shelter finally found suitable owners willing to adopt Denver and Star.

”We are thrilled that they found a forever home with a couple from Encinitas that opened their hearts to this unique bonded pair. They now spend their days exploring the world with each other, with Denver acting as Star’s seeing-eye dog,” the shelter wrote on Facebook.

The lucky owners who took in Denver and Star received training from a local expert on how to care for a puppy with special needs, and now we can only imagine the memories they’ll make with these two dogs.

“These two really can teach us all a thing or two about sibling love and how much we can achieve with the love of a good friend,” said Dahlke.

Denver and Star make one hell of a team. It’s enough to bring a tear to my eye.

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