Deaf puppy finds 'happily ever after' with hearing impaired man who teaches him sign language

A Maine man who is hearing impaired rescued a deaf puppy and has now taught him sign language, after adopting him about a month before his birthday on Saturday. 

Nick Abbott adopted puppy Emerson from the NFR Maine, a foster based rescue in North Monmouth. Emerson was only 6 weeks old when he was dumped in a shelter, Emerson's foster mother Lindsay Powers said in a Facebook post from the rescue organization. Powers fostered Emerson for about a month before Abbott adopted the black Labrador mix on March 16. 

He was “fighting for his tiny little life through seizures, parvo and being deaf, life was really stacked against him!” she said. “But man, Emerson is a fighter. Our brave little warrior. He came to Maine where all his other siblings were adopted right off.”

Being “different,” Emerson had a harder time finding his “happily ever after,” that is, until Abbott came to the rescue. 

“We just had a really tough time finding him the PERFECT home,” Powers said. “That is until we got a message from Nicholas. Nick reached out with interest in Emerson because he too is deaf.”

Abbott made the hour-long drive to the rescue and told the organization that he was interested in meeting Emerson because “they would understand each other.” 

“When Nick and his Mom walked into the house to meet Emerson, Emerson made a direct line for Nick and sat at his feet,” she said. “That's all it took. I was sold that this was fate, and these two belonged to each other.”

Abbott shares an “indescribable bond” with Emerson, who is now about 20 weeks old, and has taught him the signs for sit, lay, stay and come, Powers said. 

She said Abbott and Emerson's story will “go down in history as one my all-time favorite adoption stories.” 

“This boy deserved nothing short of a fairy tale ending and that is EXACTLY what he got!” the foster mother said. 

Kathryn Sounier, Abbott's aunt, commented on the Facebook post congratulating her nephew.

“I can tell you first hand, my nephew Nick is someone who could be called a dog whisperer. He loves dogs and they love him! What a blessing to our family to have Emerson!” she wrote. 

This story was reported from Los Angeles.