By Michael Scott
A deaf Great Dane and her adorable guide have pulled at the heartstrings of thousands.
Little 17-month-old Jennie has grown up with Great Dane, Echo, who was born without hearing and limited sight.
Mum Marion Dwyer, 33, rescued Echo who was almost put down by her previous owner for her disabilities has since formed the most adorable relationship with Jennie.
Marion said: “Echo certainly does look out for her sister Jennie and always makes sure no one gets too close to her.
“She loves people and will put herself in front of Jennie to be pet first. If a stranger with a dog approaches she will stand or sit in front of Jennie to shield her, but not showing any aggression- just making sure she’s safe.
“Jennie loves to walk Echo who has learned that Jennie’s pace is a lot slower than mine, which she enjoys as she can do two of her favourite things: sniff things and people-watch.”
Friendly giant Echo and her best friend Jennie who she has cared for since birth now take each other for walks and communicate using sign language.
Visually impaired and deaf Echo joined Marion’s other two female Great Danes at the house after she had fallen in love with the breed and wanted another.
Marion said: “Jennie now knows we use hand signs to communicate with Echo and is starting to mimic them.
“She will wave Echo over to her when she wants her to come and she knows how to offer her a treat, she likes to sneak her breakfast waffles and apple slices.
“Echo really only uses me as her guide since I was the first person for her to bond with as she was taken out of her first owner’s home when they threatened to euthanise her due to her deafness.
“Our friends and family think it is amazing and always say that they are inseparable.
“Everyone loves Echo for being so outgoing and they say that they make the perfect team as Jennie is very independent and a curious little explorer.
“Echo just seems to have always taken to Jennie, even before she was born. She always snuggled up to my baby bump and wanted to rest her head on it.
“Jennie goes to dog training with us when we have time to go and she will be in a baby carrier on my back.”