Blind dog inspires kids not to bully
Noah’s story almost ended as it began.
Five months old and struggling to survive, Noah was found at a back yard breeder in California. This white Bichon poodle mix was born without eyes and with deformed back legs making it hard to eat. Before Noah could get food his two siblings would snatch it up. When the rescue Saving K9 Lives found him he was frightened and weighed only two pounds. A sad beginning for a dog.
Lisa Marie saw a photo of Noah on Facebook and had the faith in the dog others would see as beyond help.
“It was a visceral response of ‘I need that dog.’ It didn’t take but five minutes before I started an application,” Marie said.
Lisa had actually been looking for another visually impaired dog to help, as she had already helped a dog like this in the past.
Lisa realized pretty quickly what a special dog she had found. She described how he had a very unique personality.
“He only wants to sit on your lap with his head on your neck, so heart-to-heart, neck-to-neck. He does not want to be held any other way,” she said.
Lisa decided to share his sweet personality and tenderness with as many as she could, by bringing him to nursing homes. The effect Noah had on people was inspiring. Residence who were so lonely, melted at meeting this dog. She realized she really had something.
Shortly after starting nursing home visits, she got a call from a local school wanting help with a bullying problem. Lisa knew Noah was a great solution.
She packed all Noah’s gear and arrived at the school. With no eyes, a wheelchair strapped to his legs and a halo fixed to his head Lisa asked the kids what they thought Noah couldn’t do. Many responded saying things like run, jump and play.
The children were astounded when Lisa explained that he could do all of those things. They thought he couldn’t because he looked so different. But this was the message Lisa wanted to get out to the children.
Someone who looks different on the outside, is just the same as everyone else. Difference shouldn’t exclude anyone, or make them feel less than. She explained that instead, we should approach everyone from a place of acceptance and empathy.
Noah’s message and heart-to-heart hugs have become so popular with schools that he earned a place in Murray Park Elementary School’s yearbook, as the 5th grade’s Honorary Favorite Rockstar.
His message is now known not just locally. Lisa has received countless messages from all around the country about those who have been positively changed by Noah’s story. With his example of strength and compassion, she receives notes from women going through chemo, and others who are proud of their child for sticking up for other children being bullied, because of what they saw on Facebook about Noah.
Lisa describes his message as a fast spreading one. Even a national one. Noah was even a semi-finalist for Emerging Hero Dog Award at the American Humane Associations Hero Dog Awards.