You don’t have to really be super smart to understand that doggos hold a special place in our hearts. We’ve been best buddies with these furry goofballs for centuries, and they’ve proven to be more valuable as time passed, so much so that they are now hailed as heroes for either saving our lives or improving them.
For this 48-year-old Marine Corps veteran, his doggo basically gave him a way to continue living a normal life. Richard Hunter started losing his eyesight when he was in his twenties. But despite his impairment, he continued to lead an active lifestyle. He joined races and triathlons with the guidance of a human partner.
However, a near-fatal accident while riding a bike gave him a wake-up call. Richard realized that triathlons can be too dangerous for him. Three months after Richard recovered from his injuries, he was racing again, but this time, he only joined marathons. Richard trained once again, and nine months later, he ran the Boston Marathon in 2014.
During this event, he met Thomas Panek, the president of Guiding Eyes For the Blind. Richard asked him if they ever trained a dog to run with a blind person. Unfortunately, they never did, but that question inspired Thomas to train one. He charged his training team to focus on this project for Richard.
Eventually, they chose the German shepherd named Klinger, to become Richard’s guide dog. As the trainers explained, Klinger will go through pretty much the same training routines for seeing-eye dogs, but everything is just faster. Klinger needed to work his way around obstacles and react to other people or vehicles a lot quicker since he will be running with Richard.
The pooch has so far been a wonderful companion for the blind runner. Giving him this much freedom touched one of Klinger’s trainers so much that she couldn’t help but cry during an interview. Indeed, it’s amazing how these furry pets, have become so much more than just guard dogs.
Credits: CBS This Morning