Noah, a white Bichon poodle mix, was found in the dirt at a backyard breeder in California when he was just five months old. Emaciated at just two pounds, Noah’s odds were stacked against him while trying to compete for the little food him and his two siblings were given. Born without eyes and deformed back legs, this little guy was helpless. That’s when the rescue Saving K9 Lives found him.
Lisa Marie saw a picture of Noah on Facebook, and within five minutes, she was already filling out an application to adopt her. Lisa Marie was already a dog-mom to one blind dog and had been looking to help another one.
Soon after, Noah was on his way from California to Wisconsin to his new furever home, equipped with a donated wheelchair and custom Muffin’s Halo to help him navigate through life. It didn’t take long for Lisa Marie to find out about Noah’s unique personality.
“He only wants to sit on your lap with his head in your neck, so heart-to-heart, neck-to-neck. He does not want to be held any other way,” Lisa Marie Told People Magazine. Everyone who held now 12-lb Noah found a special sense of comfort in him. Lisa Marie decided to put that to good use.
She began bringing Noah to local nursing homes and he had an immediate effect on people. “The first time we went to a nursing home I didn’t know what to expect,” Lisa Marie recalled. “This little old woman, who was in the dementia unit, hadn’t spoken for so long, and when Noah got into her lap she started to grunt. It was at that point that I knew that he had something.”
After many nursing home visits, Lisa Marie got a call from a local school that was seeking help with a bullying problem. They knew that Noah was just the dog for the job. When they got to the school, Lisa Marie started by asking the kids what they thought Noah wasn’t able to do just by looking at him. Staring at his lack of eyes, wheelchair, and halo around his head, they started calling out things like “jumping,” “running,” and “playing,” all to which Lisa Marie responded, “Yes he can!”
This was an important lesson to teach the kids. Just because someone looks different on the outside, doesn’t mean they aren’t the same as everyone else. Differences shouldn’t exclude people, or make them feel like they are worth any less than anyone else. “By the time we leave, they don’t see Noah as a disabled dog,” Lisa Marie said. “That’s how I want humans to see each other.”
Noah has positively impacted people all over the country. Lisa Marie told People that she has received notes from many different people, from a woman undergoing chemo who brings Noah’s picture to her sessions as a reminder to stay strong, to a proud mother of a child who stuck up for a little girl being bullied after he learned about Noah’s story.