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Andy with his cuddly dog in March 2014

I read ‘A Friend Like Henry’ when my son was first diagnosed with classic autism in 2009, just after his third birthday. I was then desperate to get a dog but with a new baby and 2 cats, the time wasn’t right. Finally, 4 years later, we decided to go for it. I was so excited to read in the press that Nuala had a new book out called ‘All Because Of Henry’ and was doing a book signing in a town nearby. I went along on the day and met her, and she was so warm and friendly and down to earth.

We home school our son Andy and hire a therapist to come in 2 mornings a week. Sadly our therapist whom Andy loved, was leaving to go to university. We asked Nuala if she would consider the position and we were delighted when she said yes!

Nuala has really connected with Andy, who is non verbal, and she totally ‘gets him’. She has done so much canine therapy and preparation work with him, bringing her own lovely retriever over once a week to visit. Andy has went from a wee boy who was wary of dogs, to happily cuddling Thomas the retriever. He was at the park with his dad recently and when a dog walked past, Andy said ‘dog’!

Nuala is so committed and full of ideas and enthusiasm. Importantly for us, she is also full of energy, when often we are not! She has built a strong bond with Andy, which is lovely to see. She really listens to your needs, and always does what she says she is going to do, often going above and beyond the call of duty!

Nuala has worked with us since the beginning of 2014 and we are now hoping to get our own dog as soon as possible.

I would highly recommend Nuala to other families because she has years of experience with her own autistic children. She has ‘walked the walk’.

Jennifer MacGillivray. May 2014.


 

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Noah playing along with Beano

“The success of our son’s friendship with his dog, has far exceeded all of our expectations, in a way we could never have imagined.

All of a sudden, we’ve been given the tools to do what we’ve been watching other families do (and take for granted) for years. We are making huge steps towards improving Noah’s chances of coping with early education and life, and simply becoming the happy little boy that we want to see.”

Amy Barclay, Noah’s mum extract from… All because of Henry… who used Nuala’s dog program with great sucess!