Our 6 year old son called Cohen has a severe form of autism. He is non-verbal and uses Makaton sign language. Although he is a very happy little boy at home, outdoors he becomes extremely anxious. Cohen finds the outside world very challenging, its unpredictable and loud. He struggles processing sensory input, so he finds noisy places very overwhelming. Cohen has no sense of danger and would run onto roads, into rivers or even climb up high to avoid social situations.
Support dogs have helped us to facilitate a positive way to help and support Cohen to live with autism. After been on the waiting list for almost 3 years our 'wonder dog' Azerley came into our lives.
Azerley is a truly amazing dog. He enables Cohen to be safer and calmer when he is outdoors. He gives Cohen confidence and reassurance when he is anxious.
We have only had Azerley a short time but the difference he is making is incredible!
Azerley is learning Cohen's sign language and is picking this up tremendously quick, but incredibly, Cohen is starting to speak! He gives Azerley commands. He is no longer 'shut off' from the world. Cohen engages with Azerley and wants to be with him. After a difficult transition from school to home Cohen seeks a 'Azerley hug'. To hear him giggle and say "Az stay" when he jumps on his bed is unbelievable.
The possibilities for Cohen are now endless and his potential has no bounds. We are excited for the future for our little boy. Thank you to the Azerley Estate for your amazing generosity, it truly is life changing!
To keep up to date with Azerley's progress, please follow their Facebook page: Azerley the Autism Assistance Dog