“With my disability, it’s easy to blend in and no one has to know and they leave me alone,” Regenscheid said.
Natalie was born with a severe hearing loss. She wears aids and has learned to read lips, so for years, she just blended in. Until she got Nadia, a Hearing Assistance Dog from Can Do Canines. Then, she started to hear it – the questions.
“Well, you hear me just fine, you don’t need a dog. I said – well, I need her more so for me when I’m living alone,” said Regenscheid.
Natalie was living alone, afraid. What if the smoke alarm went off at night? Now, Nadia alerts her. Same goes for timers, while she’s cooking. And, even knocks on the door.
“I wasn’t embracing my hearing loss and stepping outside of my comfort zone to really face my fears,” Regenscheid said.
Natalie isn’t scared anymore. She’s happy living alone and with a new purpose. To educate.
“My goal is to help them understand what it’s like to have a hearing loss and why we have service dogs. And, explain there are other invisible disabilities in which we do need assistance,” Regenscheid said.