Nancy Lauderman & Hearing Assistance Dog Daisy
Author: Jake Grossman
As a Hearing Assist Dog, Daisy is trained to help Nancy Lauderman of Minneapolis, Minn. with a variety of essential tasks. Due to nerve damage in childhood, Nancy has limited hearing and lacks a sense of smell. She was also diagnosed about ten years ago with depression and fibromyalgia and she lives with PTSD. With her daughters at home, Nancy’s symptoms were manageable. But after they grew up and moved out, Nancy gradually stopped cooking, fearing that she would burn food or miss the oven timer. She also had trouble hearing her phone or knocks on the door. She stopped spending as much time in social situations in which it might be difficult to lip read. Nancy reports that, “Sometimes people get quite annoyed with me when I’m out. I found myself doing the necessary things that I had to do and the rest of the time I would just stay in my apartment. I would cope when I took the grandkids out. But I preferred to be by myself.”
In addition to day-to-day limitations, Nancy was also forced to struggle with some of the more dramatic consequences of a hearing deficit. Unable to hear her phone ring, she almost missed the birth of her youngest grandchild! Hearing aids don’t compensate for Nancy’s nerve damage, so she feared that she was out of luck. Then a neighbor told her that Can Do Canines trains dogs to assist those with limited hearing.
Things have changed for the better since two-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever Daisy entered Nancy’s life. Daisy is trained to alert Nancy to timers, door knocks, cell phones, and the smoke alarm. She also picks up dropped items. With her there to provide alerts, Nancy has started cooking again, even making her daughters’ favorite foods, much to their excitement.
Equally importantly, Daisy provides emotional support and companionship. Nancy says, “She’s a very happy dog and she makes me quite happy. I sit and laugh at her a lot of the time.” Daisy’s helpfulness and affection have played a wonderful role in Nancy’s life. Not only does Daisy help Nancy babysit, but outings are once again a feasible and enjoyable option. According to Nancy, since Daisy came into her life, “I go to the coffee shop, which I wouldn’t do before. I’m just comfortable being out. If I can’t hear what other people are saying, I have my Daisy.”
Nancy praises the Can Do Canines donors, volunteers and trainers who made her life with Daisy possible. Nancy says, “She has changed my life so much. Thank you for taking care of Daisy so that I’m able to have her.” Nancy notes, and her daughters agree, that thanks to Daisy and Can Do Canines, “I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in my life.”
Thank you to all those who made this partnership possible:
Puppy Raiser – Vickie Braml
Special Thanks –Ruth Ann Marsh, The Inmate Handlers at the Federal Correctional Institution – Waseca
Dog Donor – Sherry Bradley