Deaf Great Dane and Toddler Are Adorably Inseparable

September 14, 2017
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A deaf Great Dane and a toddler have become the most charming best friends.

The toddler’s Mom, Marion Dwyer, 33, says that when she became pregnant after adopting her dog Echo in 2014, she noticed that the animal was always lying on her stomach.

“We always said she would be the baby’s best friend and she really is,” Dwyer said to  InsideEdition.com.

Dwyer’s daughter, 17-month-old Jennie, has grown up with Echo and the two have formed an unbreakable bond. The family also has two other Great Danes.

In the morning the first thing she says is, ‘Doggie,’ and in the evening she puts the dog in the bed,” Dwyer said. “I didn’t expect them to be that inseparable. She gets upset if she doesn’t get to walk the dog. She even holds his leash if she is in the stroller. They are always near each other.”

Dwyer had adopted Echo, who also has limited sight, after the dog’s owner contemplated putting her down because of her disabilities. Dwyer said that it saddened her to know that so many dogs with special needs don’t get adopted.

Thankfully, Echo now has a family who loves her unconditionally and the best friend of a lifetime. Jennie has learned signs to communicate with Echo after seeing her family signing to the 3-year-old dog.

“She will wave Echo over to her when she wants her to come and she knows how to offer her a treat, she likes to sneak her breakfast waffles and apple slices,” Dwyer said. “Jennie knows the sign for food so she’ll sign it to Echo. I didn’t expect that at all.”

Echo is also super protective of Jennie, Dwyer said. When they go on walks and Echo sees a stranger she will always get close to the toddler to make sure she’s okay.

You don’t have to get rid of your dogs when you have children,” Dwyer said. “Our friends and family think it is amazing and always say that they are inseparable.”

Animal lovers know all too well that having a pet in the family offers a number of potential benefits for children.

It can teach them about responsibility. Having a pet can help kids learn kindness toward and compassionate for all animals. Therapy pets can help reduce anxiety. Service animals can even help kids with severe disabilities perform everyday tasks. And in the end, losing a pet can teach children tough life lessons.

 

But did you know that having a pet could actually improve kids’ health?

According to a study published in JAMA Pediatrics, children who had a dog in their first year of life were 13-percent less likely to have asthma by age 6 than children who were raised on dog-free homes. Data for the study was based on 1 million children in a Swedish registry. It also found that kids who grew up on farms with animals showed a 50-percent reduction in their risk for asthma by school age.

Of course, this is only an association and not a direct cause-and-effect relationship. Still, it’s yet another potential perk of including animals in your daily life.

If you’re considering adopting an animal into your family, take a look at some of the best choices when it comes to children. According to Healthline, here are the top pets for kids:

  1. Fish. Skip the goldfish, though, and opt for the low-maintenance Siamese fighting fish (also known as a Beta.) These beautiful fish thrive in small amounts of stagnant water, meaning no heaters, filters, aerators or chemicals needed.
  2. Reptiles. These cold-blooded animals aren’t exactly cuddly, but they can make excellent pets. Certain tortoises can live exceptionally long and some types of snakes also make good pets. (Reptiles are also non-allergenic!) If you have young children, beware: The American Academy of Pediatrics(AAP) does warn against reptiles because they can easily transmit salmonella.
  3. Birds. Feathered friends are potentially great pets, too, although they require more care than fish or reptiles. Depending on the type of bird, they can be very social or intelligent and require daily attention.
  4. Rodents. Hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils and even rats are pretty easy to raise. They do well in a small living space and require simple care. While gentle handling will promote friendliness, there is still a risk for bites if the rodent feels threatened.

Surprisingly, cats and dogs came in at numbers five and six, respectively. Click hereto check out Healthline’s list in its entirety.

Adopting a pet is a huge responsibility and not a decision that should be taken lightly. But the wealth of benefits — both socially and health-wise — can be more than worth it for the memories of love and companionship that are sure to follow.

Share your thoughts! What do you think about the health benefits of having a pet? What type of animal do you think is best for kids?

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