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Two guide dogs shortlisted for National Awards

21 Nov 2014


Two guide dogs were recently shortlisted as finalists in the Daily Mirror Animal Hero Awards. Black Labrador Radley and Golden Retriever Jazz were shortlisted for separate categories and travelled with their owners to London this week to find out if they’ve won.


Radley transformed the life of his owner, Konrad Galen-Bisping by helping him regain the confidence to get out and about again. Konrad lost his sight whilst on duty in the army when he was attacked by an axe-wielding team member. Despite a horrific head injury, Konrad survived. He spent two years in hospital and rehabilitation, needing 24-hour carers when he finally returned home. He never went anywhere alone.


When Konrad was matched with Radley his confidence quickly grew. These days, they happily walk around their hometown together without a carer. Radley even helped Konrad meet his wife, Siwan, and they have a gorgeous family together.  


Radley was shortlisted for the Caring Animal of the Year category in the Daily Mirror Animal Hero Awards. You can watch Konrad’s story on the Guide Dogs YouTube channel.


Golden Retriever Jazz was a finalist in the Hero Animal of the Year Award category. Jazz is no stranger to awards, she took home the overall Guide Dog of the Year Award last year as well as winning the Beyond the Call of Duty category.


Emma crouching with her guide dog JazzJazz’s heroic actions saved not only Emma’s life, but also her two young children too.


Emma and her two sons were on one of their usual routes when they stopped at a pedestrian crossing. Jazz sat, as expected, and Emma’s eight-year-old son, Luke, pressed the button on the crossing – just as normal. As she was holding her six-year-old son’s hand in her right hand, and her guide dog’s harness in her left, Emma wasn’t able to feel the rotating cone underneath the crossing’s box.


While Emma was asking her eldest to tell her when the green man appeared, Jazz suddenly stood up and pulled her backwards away from the curb. Trusting her guide dog instinctively, Emma stepped backwards, taking her youngest son, Owen, with her. She shouted at her eldest son to do the same, and Luke was able to move back just as a huge lorry mounted the curb where they had been standing.


You can hear more about Emma and Jazz’s story on our YouTube channel.


Whilst neither of our finalists took home an award at the end of the evening, we are still very proud of them both and this acts as a great reminder of how life-changing all guide dogs are.


Konrad with his guide dog Radley