Tuesday, 09 March 2021

MEET Jenkins, our six-year-old golden retriever/Labrador cross, a withdrawn guide dog.

We had him at age 15 months straight from his puppy walker.

As a result of a bowel inflammation at six weeks, and missing some important training, he lacked confidence and became traffic-shy and adverse to loud, unusual noises, so reluctantly the decision was made to withdraw him from advance training.

Being volunteer Guide Dogs dog boarders and puppy sponsors and having lost our beloved black Labrador Raffles, we applied to adopt a withdrawn guide dog and were exceptionally lucky to be chosen to adopt Jenkins quite soon afterwards.

At our first meeting, after happily greeting us, Jenkins promptly went to sleep snuggled up on my husband’s feet! Love at first sight!

Apart from being a very affectionate companion, he loves being with us or playing very gently with Sophie, our granddaughter,

He has three special doggy friends with whom he loves playing and going on long walks. He still dislikes noisy cars with trailers, cats and squirrels and he objects to being barked at by small, yappy dogs. He’s a wonderful character. He’s also the perfect traveller, having been driven to Scotland and back three times. He just sleeps throughout the journey, waking only when the car stops.

Jenkins is our third family dog and we’ve loved them all.

His imperfections aside, most of the time he displays the basic gentle steady character of a dog whose breeding and training is aimed solely at providing the eyes for blind people, giving them the confidence and enjoyment of life they wouldn’t otherwise have.

We consider ourselves the luckier for having him in our lives, while very much appreciating the awe-inspiring work that Guide Dogs and its trainers do, which frankly never ceases to amaze.

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