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Abigail is kneeling on the grass next to her yellow Lab Buddy Dog, Lindsay; Abigail is walking on the sidewalk holding her white cane in her right hand, and holding Lindsay’s leash in her left hand while Lindsay is walking beside her wearing her bright yellow Buddy Dog vest, and Lindsay’s mom is walking behind them holding onto a secondary leash; Abigail has her arm around her Buddy Dog, Lindsay.

Children with CNIB Buddy Dogs: Abigail & Lindsay

“My Dad did some research and learned that even though I’m too young for a guide dog, I may be able to have a CNIB Buddy Dog! After wanting a dog for a long time, getting one was like a dream come true. Along came my new furry friend, Lindsay – a yellow Lab who turned three in September. She’s a lot like me; funny, friendly, cute, and likes to party! I really enjoy our cuddles and how she helps me on our walks. If I could just say one message to Lindsay it’s that I want her to know that even though I go to school, I will always come back every day. A few more messages…I’d like to know what she wants for her birthday and tell her there's no more dunking her donut stuffy toy in my bath water! Lindsay really likes swimming, playing ball outside, taking trips to the pet store, and – my favourite – camping with her while she sleeps in the RV with me. All my friends and family like her a lot because she’s so friendly and sweet to everyone. On top of that, she’s a blood donor, too! I’m grateful to have her. I think this is a really good program.”  -Abigail, age 11

A buddy dog is partnered with a child/youth between the ages of 7 and 16 who is living with sight loss. Whether it’s feeding, grooming or walking this well-trained family pet, this will give the child an opportunity to care for a dog, and make it easier to transition into a guide dog partnership in some cases. If you think your child could benefit from being partnered with a CNIB Buddy Dog, please contact Miriam Mas, Program Lead, Buddy Dogs & Ambassador Dogs.