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Jessica and Cameron

Meet Graduate Jessica

Graduate Jessica and black Lab guide dog CameronJune On-Campus Training
Graduate Team:  Jessica and Cameron
About the Team:  Cameron, a male black Lab, is Jessica’s 2nd guide dog from Guiding Eyes
Hometown:  Cranston, Rhode Island
Guide Dog Mobility Instructor:  Susan Kroha

Jessie returns to the Specialized Training Program after enjoying great success with her first guide dog, Parson. She enjoyed learning new skills while attending class on the Yorktown campus with her new guide, Cameron. Back home, Jessie and Cameron enjoy their walks to the local Starbucks and McDonalds. Jessie’s hobbies include drawing and knitting.

How would you describe your guide dog? “Cameron is both a goofball and a hard worker. He is very funny and likes to climb into my lap and lick my face. He gets along well with our pet dog, Pepper. They love to play together in the backyard.  He also likes to show-off his toys when meeting others. In harness, he is very focused and is learning our routes. He likes to target things like the crosswalk button. He responds very well to the touch command if I need to get his attention.”

What made you decide to apply for a guide dog from Guiding Eyes?  “As my vision was deteriorating, I investigated guide dog schools and chose Guiding Eyes for their Specialized Training program. The program makes training accessible to students with other disabilities, in addition to visual impairment. I got my first guide dog, Parson, from Guiding Eyes, so returning to the school was a clear choice.”

How has having a guide dog impacted your life?  “Cameron allows me to be much more independent.  I do not have to rely on others. Plus, he is a great companion!”

Were there any training highlights? “I really enjoyed training.  My trainer Susan was especially helpful.  Even though I had previous experience with Parson, I learned new techniques. For example, Cameron gets a treat every time he responds when I call his name. This ensures that his interaction with me is always his priority. It felt great to have a guide dog again, and previous “muscle memory” kicked in and we were off!  I enjoyed the collaboration and socializing with my four classmates. I have some central vision, so I was able to be helpful to my peers. Finally, I must mention the kitchen staff.  Not only do they provide outstanding meals, but they really are part of what makes Guiding Eyes hospitality so outstanding.  They made it a point to get to know and engage with each of us.”

Meet Guide Dog Cameron

Cameron was an incredibly bright puppy who made everyone smile. He was so attentive and loved to learn, especially when treats were involved. He loved running around and taking walks, but when he was tired, he was tired. Cameron would plop down in the middle of the road, parking lot, or sidewalk whenever he decided he needed a break. Our most enjoyable outings were to the lake down my road called “Dog Pond.” Cameron loved to swim. He would splash and run around with a stick in his mouth. He loved his sticks. Cameron was the light of my life, he made the world a little brighter. Thank you Guiding Eyes for giving me the chance to meet my best friend. I know he will make his handler’s life a little brighter too.

Emma Greenwood, Puppy Raiser

Enjoy photos of the team…

Emma Greenwood, Puppy Raiser