It's been a month since my last writing but it's been seven years already since we helped rescue our sweet, loving Judea. Watching this wonderful video of our deaf dog run free and happily makes my heart rejoice with the blessings that I have been endowed with her in my life.
This also causes me to reflect on the blessings that all my dogs have brought into my life, and . . . the lives of so many others, directly and indirectly. I hope to share with you some of the thoughts that others have written in notes to me when Hogan, our first deaf dog, was still alive. Their words tell how one blessing multiplies into many.
Back in 1996 I met a wonderful woman by the name of Jane Colton who lived in New York City. She rescued not one but two beautiful, deaf Dalmatians, Dotty and Spotty. Jane and I met on the Internet because we shared the love of our deaf four-legged children. She helped to create memories for us and for the nation. Because of her perseverance in proclaiming the worthiness of our deaf dogs, she "hounded" Dateline until producer Betsy Osha responded and produced the segment "Deaf Sentence" in December of 1996. In one of her many notes after I sent her a pocket handbook on American Sign Language and my list of tips for working with deaf dogs, Jane wrote:
Connie, I want to thank you for the book you sent me. When I received it, I read it before I went to bed. I found the analogy between the signs and what they were trying to convey so interesting. The next day I had to fly to San Francisco. There was a young man who looked like he was having trouble understanding me. Believe it or not I was able to ask him, in signing, if he was deaf and asked if he could read lips. I then signed to him that my two dogs were deaf and then asked if he understoof me. He said, "Yes," and wrote me a little note saying his name is Alex and that his eyes were red because he was leaving all his friends behind to move to Australia. I had saved the note for you but somehow it fell out of my pocket. So, I guess your book will have a dual purpose perhaps. Thank you so much.
I'm sending you pictures of the dogs neither of which may be alive today if you weren't there to let me know that they could be as happy as any other dog. On look at Spotty's face and you can certainly tell that . . . . she says thanks, too!!!
It's because of our deaf dogs that she was able to help another human being whose heart needed someone to reach out to him. If we hadn't shared our mutual love of our deaf dogs, this hurting young man would have been left alone, abandoned so to speak.
Our love and acceptance have ripple effects. Hogan's hurting and abandonment turned into a world of love and acceptance because someone reached out and rescued him. His hope to connect with others was realized through signing and he triumphed. We now reach out to each other in love and acceptance because of our sensitized hearts that we all are worthy.
I have set a new goal -- to share some of the marvelous stories, letters, or notes from families who have been blessed with an extraordinary gift of a deaf dog. Perhaps through their lives, words, and hearts, the message that deaf dogs are worthy of love and acceptance will become more than crystal clear and heart awakening.
Please watch the video again and enjoy the happiness of one very special, deaf pup who blesses my life every second of every day!
"There are none so deaf than those who refuse to listen."