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9/16/16

Natural Balance Celebrates National #GuideDogMonth With the Top Human-Canine Teams Who Make Us Believe

I have an eye problem and have often wondered how I'd adjust if things would change. I'm always interested in learning more about how a guide dog works and even learning sign language and all the things that aid in making life easier for a special needs person.

Question:
>> Have you ever seen a blind person in public and didn't know how to react, or worse—walked around them to avoid interacting with them? 

September is National Guide Dog Month and people who are blind or visually impaired and have chosen to work with guide dogs for mobility have incredible and inspiring stories to share about their adventures together.

Natural Balance (the maker of premium-quality pet food) and Guide Dogs for the Blind (a non-profit charitable organization that raises and trains guide dogs and serves the visually impaired) is celebrating Natural Balance's "top 10 human-canine teams who make us believe"


Here is the story of Maile & Jasmine:


Imagine, for a brief moment, that you’re in the prime of your life. You’re 23 years old and suddenly go blind overnight. For Maile George, this is not a fictional scenario—it’s what happened to her.
After losing her sight, Maile felt as if her life was shrinking. However, she met a woman who had a guide dog, who would become a role model and inspiration for her in living a fuller life.

Maile was introduced to her current canine companion, Jasmine, through Guide Dogs for the Blind

“Jasmine is a superhero times three! Not only is she a wonderful companion—there’s no one in the world I’d want to spend all day everyday with except her. She also enables me to navigate any sidewalk in any city safely, gracefully, and confidently,” says Maile.

She adds, “I enjoy volunteer work, taking classes, and I’m 100% convinced that I’m as healthy as I am because it’s just so much fun to get out and meet people when you have an intelligent, gorgeous, healthy, friendly, well-behaved and, yes, perfect guide dog!”

Source: Guide Dogs for the Blind

I had a very dear friend once whom I met through a co-worker. He was in a band, a very kind person and also blind.
It was amazing to see how well he commanded his environment. He showed confidence in his disability, but I felt sometimes he was perhaps sad. I think he could perhaps also see a little light, but not distinguish features clearly.

We were both a source of help to each other. I'd take him out to experience the town as best as I could. I remember I would always get drumsticks for us each Friday. At least, I let him know that I was getting drumsticks for us. We'd stop at the store and I'd get them, take him back to the office where he lived in a small apartment in the complex and we'd have the drumsticks. They were those fun ice cream things, and I loved them. They were a treat. He loved them too.

Surprisingly, after a few years, something happened and I was asking him what flavor drumstick he wanted. He said, barbecued! I was shocked. I explained the flavors they had. I think before all this, he would say to get what I got in regards to flavors. He started laughing.
Later he explained that he had always wondered where the drumsticks went when I ordered them!!! He thought I was ordering chicken this whole time!
Oh boy did we laugh to tears.

It's been years and I do miss him as a person. I know now that if we were still in contact or friends, I'd have gotten him a guide dog.

Source: Guide Dogs for the Blind

Our pets are so very important. We have adopted our cat, Moose. The kids love him and he is just a sweetheart to have in the family.
He stalks me around the house during the day :)


In September, Natural Balance and Guide Dogs for the Blind are partnering up to spread awareness about the amazing bond between people who are blind and their guide dogs. In addition to providing enhanced mobility for their handlers, guide dogs can also be a social bridge, opening a world of possibilities for friendship and human connection, all while showcasing the incredible capabilities of man's best friend.

National Guide Dog Month was inspired by Natural Balance's co-founder Dick Van Patten, who was blindfolded during a trip to a guide dog school and got to experience how these amazing creatures provide mobility to the visually impaired.

I truly believe we can do a great public service by sharing inspiring stories of people and their guide dogs, and highlighting the life-changing mission of Guide Dogs for the Blind!

Source: Guide Dogs for the Blind

Visit the Natural Balance's National Guide Dog Month website and donate to  support their life-changing mission.


Do you have a special bond with your pet? Tell me about it in the comments below.



Colette is a busy mom of 2 kids focusing solely on being a mom. She hails from the Caribbean and now balances the full life of being a SAHM and dabbling in odd jobs to help around the home. She enjoys sharing her memories, hopes, food, travel, entertainment, and product experiences on her blog. Please read my disclosure 
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23 comments :

  1. I had a pet when I was very young. I didn't think too much of it when he was around. He was a family dog. But one day, I didn't see him anymore. I recalled hearing my parents said that he got really sick and had to go. So as a kid, I felt the emptiness around the house, but didn't know what those feelings meant, or how to react to that. Now I know better what those feelings were. But I can't imagine loosing a pet after years of being together now - so I choose not to have one. I would consider having one if it's a rescue situation. Thanks for sharing your story, I really enjoyed reading it today. :-)

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    1. Thank you for sharing Amanda.
      It shows how important it is to be keen about addressing children's feelings so they can understand what is happening inside.

      Delete
  2. Dogs are the most incredible companions and they stay with you even after they are gone. My daughter was about 8 months old when our dog passed away. Even though by that time she was in her crib, she seemed to just know. While I was gone with my father in law taking her somewhere, my husband said our daughter woke up and just kept looking around for the dog. She still speaks of her even though she was so young.

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    1. Kids are amazing and so are animals.
      I always want a dog.

      Delete
  3. My dog is like my child. It's just him, my cat and I and I can't imagine life without him. I empathize with Maile, going blind would be horrible beyond anything I could imagine.

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    1. Thank you for sharing.
      I definitely love our cat.

      Delete
  4. I had a dog last 3 years ago. I was 6 months pregnant. But she died because she had a virus. I cried because she was like a daughter to me. I really missed her. BTW, your dogs are so cute! :)

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    1. Hugs, so sorry Marga.
      And these are not my dogs. Just photos of other peoples dogs.

      Delete
  5. Guide dogs are amazing, they're irreplaceable and I will always admire the way they serve people especially after reading these stories. I'm glad we have a whole month dedicated to honor them and what they do.

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  6. Guide dogs are amazing, they're irreplaceable and I will always admire the way they serve people especially after reading these stories. I'm glad we have a whole month dedicated to honor them and what they do.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The last time we had a dog when I was a little girl. I missed him so much, he is really a guide dog for me.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing Nicole.
      I really want one for our family

      Delete
  8. I love animals and the thought of losing a pet is simply heartbreaking. I am glad they are being honored this way, they really are a blessing

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  9. I thought of chicken too when you said drumsticks. :) You named your cat Moose!! Love love love that name! And hurrah for guide dogs who help navigate life easier!

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    1. Rosey, when we adopted him, his name was Moose. We decided to keep it. Even though my son wanted to change it :)

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  10. Oh my gosh, so sweet! My sister in law named her cat Moose too :)

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  11. I don't understand why anyone would feel uncomfortable around blind people.They are people just like anyone else. The only difference is they cannot see. These dogs are so beautiful, caring and protective. Anyone is lucky to own one of them. The puppies are just too adorable!!!

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    Replies
    1. I agree Glenda. I would feel much compassion, not uncomfortable.

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  12. Guide dogs are amazing!!!! I have a friend who's daughter has one and that dog is just incredible

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    Replies
    1. I agree Courtney.
      Thanks for sharing.

      Delete

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