Meet Smiley: The Blind Therapy Dog That More Than Lives Up To His Name!FamilyPet
A blind Golden Retriever named “Smiley” is reminding everyone that dogs make the world a much happier place.
Born without eyes, Smiley and his owner, Joanne George, have been visiting patients and nursing home residents in a small Canadian town to brighten their days.
Smiley was rescued from a puppy mill by his owner when he was about 1 or 2-years-old.
According to George, “He was very scared, the dogs had never been out of that barn.” But with love and care, Smiley went from scared and timid to a bouncy and happy-go-lucky puppy.
After seeing the playful pup interact with crowds, George realized he would be the perfect therapy dog.
After one small visit to a nursing home, she realized the special dog’s impact. “There was this man Teddy, he had no speech, no way of communication at all. The staff had never seen Teddy smile before.”
But Teddy’s reaction when Smiley approached him amazed the staff. “Teddy smiled when Smiley got into his vision.”
So what’s George’s advice for those considering adopting a blind dog? It’s key for the dog to figure out how to get around on their own. “Don’t run his life, don’t keep him in a bubble.” George says “Does he bump into things? Of course, he does. But he does it very carefully,” noting the dog’s “high” steps when he walks. “He’s feeling with his feet.”
Smiley is now 10-years-old and is said to be a favorite service dog in the Stouffville area.