Christine thinks you’re “awesome”

For two and a half years now Christine’s guide dog Bradley has been guiding her safely around her neighbourhood, to all the places she likes to go.

Bradley is not Christine’s first guide dog. She got her first dog back in November 1994, when she lost all her sight. So she’s had guide dogs for many years now.

Christine was born vision impaired. Her mother had rubella, a known cause of childhood blindness and other disorders. Christine ended up losing one eye as a teenager after having cataracts, glaucoma and other vision issues. Then she went blind in her remaining eye at the age of 37.

That’s when she decided that a guide dog would give her the independence she needed.

And it’s been important. Christine says, “Without the support of Blind Low Vision NZ I would not have gone very far with my life”.

She’s had support from us since she was a child. These days, as well as the guide dog services, Christine is grateful for the library and recreation services and enjoys the benefits of the adaptive technology service.

Almost every day, she and Bradley go out. ”Bradley likes meeting people,” says Christine. “He likes going on the train. And he especially likes going to the park for a free run.”

He’s affectionate too. “He likes to lick my ear when I’m bending down or sitting on the floor,” says Christine.

And when it’s dinner time, “He does a kind of excited dance because he knows he is getting his meal”.

When he’s not working, Bradley’s favourite thing to do is lie in the sun with his feet in the air.

Christine is grateful for all the support she gets from Blind Low Vision NZ, but especially the support she gets from the guide dog trainers. “They’ve been wonderful,” she says.

And the amazing people who donate each month to support the guide dog programme and other services, to Christine, “You’re awesome”.