Hearing Dog Reba was just placed a few months ago and already made a heroic rescue! Here's her story, told by her recipient AnnaMarie:
On the morning of Sept. 26th 2015, I went to work to find my client, whom is a quadriplegic due to MS, unresponsive with a fever of 106.1, B/P 68/42, oxygen level 68% on 3 liters of oxygen, pulse was low, almost undetectable & her respirations were quick & shallow. She was basically standing in line in front of the Pearly Gates. My usual routine when I get there in the morning is to get the coffee going, take her two dogs out to potty, then come back in and make breakfast & get the coffee and medication. That morning Reba tried to dart into the bedroom, trying to forgo our usual morning run of the mill retain. In the kitchen she was spazzy, trying everything in her power to get my attention. I just gave a gentle tug on her leash & told her, “Easy.” She quieted down, but you could tell she didn’t want to, there was something that had a hold of her attention and she wasn’t going to let it go easily.
I put the coffee on, got the other dogs ready & started to head for the door. That’s when Reba just about knocked me to the ground and pulled on my pant leg all the way to the bedroom doorway.
I picked her up and told her, “Look girl, Ms. Kathy is sleeping. You can tell her good morning in just a minute let’s let her rest for a few more minutes.” My client had had an infusion earlier in the week and was still feeling drained from the treatment, which she normally felt for a few days afterwards. Reba wasn’t happy about not being able to get on the bed to say, “Good morning” right then, but went along with what I said; reluctantly. When I got back in from taking the other two dogs out, I didn’t even get a chance to take them off their leashes and she was in my face jumping up & down. I’ve NEVER seen her act like this. This time I said, “Reba!, what is it?” She led me to the bedroom and jumped up on the bed in a single bound, which is not like her because; of the bed being a medical bed it sits high off the ground and I have to pick her up and put her on it. She laid upon my clients chest & started licking her face. I looked at my client and she was pouring sweat. I disconnected her from her bi-pap machine and she was not responding, even with all of Reba’s kissing.
I performed her vitals and immediately called 911. The first responders were there within moments. We rode to the hospital in the ambulance with all the lights flashing and the sirens blaring. It never even fazed her. Reba stayed by my side, not making a move, in the ER, MRI & CAT Scan exam rooms, where there were plenty of sounds for her to alert me to. Even when they moved my client to a room in the critical care unit, Reba was still very professional. When the hospital personnel spoke to me, she would look at them intensely with professionalism, like she understood everything they were saying. They had to perform a tracheotomy on my client. She had a very bad UTI, was badly septic and had asperative pneumonia. She is now in a respite center, where she is learning how to live with her tracheotomy.
The greatest words that could have been spoken to me that day by the staff at Parker Advantist Hospital were, “I didn’t know there was a dog in here,” “So, this is the little hero,” & “If it wasn’t for your dog, this could have had a very different outcome.” If it wasn’t for Reba demanding me to pay attention to her, then I would have continued with the morning routine of making breakfast, getting coffee, & medication, and it might have been too late for Ms. Kathy. I am now more in tune with Reba’s body language and pay closer attention to everything that she alerts me to--because you never know when it could be someone in need.