Deaf shelter dog finds new home as best friend for deaf, autistic teen

Sometimes it can be hard for dogs with disabilities to find good homes, but sometimes they find just the right person who truly understands them.

That’s the story of a deaf dog named Dave, who has found a perfect new home with an owner who is also deaf.

Dave, originally called “Puppy,” is a 6-year-old pit bull mix who was taken in by the Humane Society of Midland County, after he was found on his own and getting into fights with porcupines.

After they took the stray in, the shelter realized he was completely deaf, but still a sweet loving dog who would be perfect for adoption.

“He was a definite staff and volunteer favorite,” Casey Nicholson, the shelter’s communication coordinator, told Daily Paws. “He was super interactive with kids and super gentle—always gentle, sweet, outgoing, and friendly.”

So when the shelter hosted an “Empty the Shelters” event over the summer, they thought that someone would give Dave a good home. But days went by, and while thousands of other dogs were adopted, Dave was passed by.

But on the last day, a family came in and knew immediately that Dave was the one.

Walker Cousineau, 14, is on the autism spectrum and has also been losing his hearing. When he heard about Dave’s story online, he saw a kindred spirit and knew he could be the one to give the dog a home.

“[Walker] walked in and said, ‘We have to go to Midland, I have a dog there! There’s a deaf dog there, and he has to be mine!'” Walker’s mother Mindy Cousineau told Daily Paws.

The family went to HSOMC, and after meeting Dave it was clear he had a special connection with Walker. They adopted him, and the deaf dog has done wonders for Walker’s self-esteem.

“Dave has been such a calming presence for Walker,” Mindy Cousineau told Newsweek. “Dave knows when Walker is getting upset and he just calms him down. Walker is learning more signs for himself and also so he can ‘talk’ to Dave.”

“Walker is feeling better about losing his hearing now that we have Dave, wearing his hearing aids all the time now and doesn’t feel out of place. The boys are inseparable. Neither one can be far from the other’s sight. They sleep together and honestly do everything together since we got Dave.”

It’s clear that Walker and Dave were meant to be together. It was a very happy ending for everyone who wanted to see the sweet dog adopted.

“It was an instant connection,” said Brittany Schlacter from the BISSELL Pet Foundation, who sponsored the adoption event. “The two are now inseparable and have clearly saved each other.”

This is one adoption story that was truly meant to be. Walker gave Dave the home he always wanted, and in return he got a friend who understands everything he’s going through and gives him self-esteem.

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