Not only are dogs our loving pets, but they can also be heroes who make a difference in people’s lives every single day. In honor of the guide dogs that have changed the lives of those with disabilities, April 29th is International Guide Dog Day.
Guide dogs are dedicated to their work, and without them, many could not do simple daily activities that most people take for granted. Their work has saved countless lives, and they serve a huge role in our communities.
In honor of International Guide Dog Day, here are nine inspirational stories of how heroic guide dogs have changed the lives of individuals for the better.
1. Blind Teenager Finds Hope Again
At five years old Nathan got arthritis, and soon after, the inflammation affected his eyesight. Fourteen years later, he became fully blind.
He felt like he wouldn’t be able to go on, but that’s when his family decided to get a guide dog, and it changed his life.
When Nathan met Hudson, it was the most amazing day, and he even cried because of how emotional the experience was. Hudson has turned Nathan’s life around.
Nathan gained the confidence to go out and the motivation to continue living even with the loss of his sight. Hudson was more than just a guide dog, he became Nathan’s best friend.
2. Blind Girl Runs Cross Country With Guide Dog
Sami was just like your everyday sixteen year old, except Sami was blind. However, that didn’t stopped Sami from running cross country.
Before going blind in eighth grade, she loved to run, but she didn’t want to stop because of her disability. Because of her guide dog, Chloe, she was able to continue doing what she loved.
Chloe ran with Sami for miles and trained with her on a daily basis. Because of Chloe, Sami was able to continue doing cross country with her school, and the team gained an extra four-legged member.
3. Guide Dog Saves Man From Train Tracks
Ten-year-old guide dog Orlando was with his human, Cecil, when the man fainted and fell on the train tracks. Rather than staying put, Orlando leaped into action, doing exactly what he was trained to do.
He jumped down to be by his human’s side on the tracks, barking frantically to alert bystanders. Thankfully Cecil only suffered a couple of cuts from falling, and both of them survived.
Orlando retired from his duties, but thanks to crowdfunding Cecil was able to keep him, and they became inseparable.
4. Guide Dogs Change Two Parents’ Lives
Mollie and Jeffery have two separate stories, but they’re very similar as they were both parents who happened to be blind.
Being a mom, Mollie was scared her blindness would make life difficult for her children. But her kids completely understood, and they loved their mom’s guide dog like family.
Jeffrey’s guide dog made it possible for him to be more independent so he could spend more time with his two children.
Both Mollie and Jeffrey were able raise their kids and be normal parents thanks to the help of their guide dogs.
5. Guide Dog Helps Owner Overcome Fear
Tracey’s life changed for the better because of her guide dog Gordon. She became much more open to the possibility of new adventures and getting out than she was before.
Gordon guided her during the peak hours of traffic during her commute and helped her find her way in the dark after getting out of work. The dog changed the way Tracey thought about her life and restored her faith in herself.
Before Gordon, Tracey didn’t venture out, but now nothing can stop her because of her guide dog.
6. Guide Dogs Bring True Love
Mark and Claire, both blind, met while they were getting their guide dogs. The dogs they were training with kept pulling towards each other, so the two humans started talking.
Because of their guide dogs, the two started going on dates, and it was a perfect match because they loved hanging out, and so did their pups. It was great because they felt like they could understand each other since they both had the same disability.
Eventually Mark proposed, and it’s all thanks to their guide dogs.
7. Blind Woman’s Life Changing Decision
Cassandra used to rely on a cane to get around, but it wasn’t always the most effective way of dodging obstacles because her response time wasn’t fast enough. Getting a guide dog was a life-changing decision.
Her Labrador Retriever guide dog, named Esme, was able to keep her walking on an obstacle free path. She prevented Cassandra from walking into lamp posts or crowds of people, which happened much more frequently with her cane.
Cassandra felt much safer with Esme guiding her path.
8. Blind Dog Gets Guide Dog
Tanner the two-year-old Golden Retriever was blind since birth. But he found a guide dog of his very own–his one-year-old friend Blair, the Labrador Retriever.
After being taken in by a Golden Retriever rescue group, things looked rough until Blair showed up. Blair was brought in with a gunshot wound after being on the street, and the two immediately took to each other.
It’s as if it was destiny that these two dogs were to meet. They became best friends, and Tanner’s seizures even calmed down once they were together.
9. Guide Dog Helps Owner Travel
Devyn the guide dog made traveling much easier for his human, Caitlin. What might seem like simple travel to the rest of us became extremely difficult for her and required a lot of effort before she met her guide dog.
Because of Devyn, Caitlin didn’t have to work as hard. The dog did the work in navigating around obstacles and made Caitlin more certain that she wasn’t going to hit anything.
She gained the reassurance that someone else was helping her instead of her trying to figure it out all by herself.
Are you happy to celebrate guide dogs on International Guide Dog Day? Do you have an inspirational guide dog story? Let us know and leave a comment below!