Deaf Dog Only Feels Safe When She’s With Her Travel Pillow
Now she lends it to her new deaf brother, who needs it too ❤️️
Nali was listed for free on Craigslist, but when a family took her in and realized she was deaf, they decided they didn’t want her. They kept her outside without any toys before surrendering her to a shelter. That’s how Dharma Lorenz found her and became her new mom.
“The moment I saw her, I knew that I needed to take her,” Lorenz told The Dodo. “My initial intention was to just foster her and find a home for her … She was SO scared and sad in the shelter but still wagged her tail and was brave enough to come to me.”
As Nali settled into her new home, she looked to her new big sister, Amba, for guidance. She seemed so scared of doing something wrong and losing her new home, but Amba helped show her that she was safe now. Still, sometimes she needed a little extra reassurance — and that’s when she discovered her travel pillow.
“I had just come home from a two-week trip and my travel pillow was on top of my suitcase,” Lorenz said. “When I wasn't paying attention, she carried it to the couch and was laying with her head on it. Super cute, of course! From that time on, she began to carry it everywhere she went. She slept with it, she laid it next to her bowl while she ate. If she misplaced it somewhere, she'd look everywhere, whining until she found it. It seemed to comfort her and help alleviate her fears.”
It was as if the travel pillow represented Nali’s new mom coming home to her even after being gone for a little while. It represented the fact that she’d never have to worry about being abandoned ever again. As a result, the travel pillow quickly became her very best friend.
For a while, Nali took the travel pillow everywhere with her. It came with her on every walk and even went with her to the vet for extra comfort. It was her constant companion — until she found someone who needed it more than her.
When Lorenz saw a dog named Satchi at the shelter, she had a similar reaction to when she met Nali. He was also deaf and terrified, and she knew he needed her just as much as Nali had.
“He was so traumatized when he got there that he wouldn't come out of his cubby,” Lorenz said. “He looked so confused and scared it broke my heart … I began to take him out into the yard and teach him some hand signals. He was and is extremely eager to please … He waited in the shelter for seven to eight months with no interest whatsoever. He would usually stay in his cubby just watching people walk by and waiting day after day. Not many people would stop, and no one asked to see him. Then, with no warning, he was given 24 hours before he was to be euthanized. I adopted him that day.”
When Satchi arrived in his new home, he looked to Nali the same way she had looked to Amba. She immediately became his best friend, and she helped to alleviate a lot of the same fears she had when she was first adopted. Slowly but surely, she helped Satchi make progress — and then she gave him the ultimate gift.
“Nali had the pillow one day, and he grabbed it as if to play tug, but she just let go of it, which was interesting because they usually, if not always, play tug with everything,” Lorenz said. “Once he had it, she seemed to be completely OK with him keeping it. It was as if ‘pillow’ had done its work for her and she knew that Satchi needed it now.”
Now, Satchi sleeps with the travel pillow and takes it with him in the car when he’s feeling scared. Nali passed it on to him, hoping that it will help him as much as it helped her, and maybe someday he’ll pass it on to another dog in need.