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Dazia and Casey

Meet Graduate Dazia

Graduate Team:  Dazia and Casey Dazia sits with black Lab guide dog Casey for their team portrait
About the Team
:  Casey, a male black Lab is Dazia’s first guide dog
Location:  Auxvasse, Missouri
Training:  November 2023 On-Campus

Dazia has hoped to partner with a guide dog since she was a child of 8 years old. She is very happy to have realized that dream with Casey, her first guide dog. She is currently enrolled in her local community college and pursuing a degree in nursing. In her free time, Dazia enjoys drawing, video games and scary movies. In the summer months, Dazia likes visiting the nearby city of Columbia, MO where she enjoys taking walks.

How would you describe your guide dog? “Casey is the sweetest dog ever! He is 2 ½ years old.  If he were a person, he would be described as kind and helpful. He loves people and he loves to work. He always checks in with me and walks at my pace. Casey is the perfect dog for me; I cannot image a better guide.”

What made you decide to apply for a guide dog from Guiding Eyes? “I learned about Guiding Eyes from two different people.  My brother is also visually impaired and was recently at a school where he learned about Guiding Eyes for the Blind. I also had a teacher who had a guide dog named Honor, that she received from Guiding Eyes. I love animals and have always wanted a guide dog. Guiding Eyes was the place for me!”

How has having a guide dog impacted your life? “In the short time I have had him, Casey has made my life so much easier. I live in a busy area with a lot of traffic. When I use my cane, I feel like people do not always notice or respect it.  I often felt I could not go out alone. Casey has changed all that! I am more independent. I know I am safer with Casey and can walk without the worry.”

Were there any training highlights? “The whole experience was amazing! I loved learning to walk with Casey in New York City. One highlight was learning how to safely get on an escalator together!  The night walk at Guiding Eyes was memorable as well. I really noticed Casey’s movements through the harness. Every staff member was so caring and willing to help. I felt very comfortable. Casey and I needed some extra training, and I was able to do that at home with my Guiding Eyes remote instructor, Dave.”

Meet Guide Dog Casey

DOB:  6/24/2021
Litter ID: S-3CC21
Color/Breed:  Black/Labrador Retriever
Gender: Male
Brood: Fendi
Stud: Elrod
Littermates: Chloe, Cypress, Chi, Cuba, Colette, Cobey
Region:  Wayne County NY
Regional Puppy Instructor: MeKalea Chambliss
Puppy Raiser:  Colleen Kolb

Special Recogniton: Casey was special named by Charles and Kathy Clark in memory of their first dog, Casey. The Clarks are glad to support our work and that Casey’s legacy will continue with Dazia.

From the Puppy Raiser…

As a first-time puppy raiser, I was full of excitement, nerves, and MANY questions when I first met Casey. Along the way, Casey made me laugh at all his silly noises, impressed me with how quickly he learned new skills, and taught me so much as we approached challenges together. As Casey grew up, we had a lot of fun with his sisters Chi and Cuba who were raised in the same region – “the three C’s” enjoyed many outings together! Casey also built up quite a fan club on the college campus where I work. He loved saying hi to all his friends! I am so proud of the dog Casey has become and I’m thrilled that he has found his match with Dazia. They make a wonderful team! ~ Colleen Kolb, Puppy Raiser

Photos of the Team…

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