Callum's First Blog!

Hello, my name is Callum and I'm very happy to say I'm now Iggy's new owner!

Callum and Iggy sitting together I'm 16 years old (turning 17 in May) and have been blind since birth. I have used a cane ever since I could walk, to navigate my way around. However, back in June, I started looking into getting a guide dog after hearing from friends who had guide dogs about how amazing they are and how much they have changed their lives. I applied in June and Guide Dogs did some work with me on my cane skills and some routes I wanted to learn. Then in January I met Iggy and had a bit of a walk with her to see how I felt walking with a dog as it is very different to a cane, then I was put on the waiting list for a dog.

To my surprise, in February I got a phone call saying that Iggy was a match and I could start my training within the next month, I can't tell you how excited I was!

Iggy moved in with me and my mum on the 22nd of February and this is when we started training together. I was nervous about having her living with me at first but she settled in no problem, and we both quickly started making great progress in our training. We have now qualified on my route to my nan's house, which is quite a straight forward route and also on my route to college which involves getting a bus and a train so it is quite a test for her, but she does it perfectly. I can definitely already see how much of a difference she will make to my independence and confidence.

As well as this, we’re also starting to see her little mischievous side. Occasionally when she has to be left in the house on her own, her favourite game seems to be to find my mums slipper and hide it, so we’ll often come home and find her slipper in the middle of the living room floor, or in the box with her toys, or whichever other hiding place she can find! Apart from those little things, she is extremely well behaved and still very laid back and sleepy, just like you see when she’s in the Blue Peter studio.

I honestly can’t thank the Guide Dogs team enough for all the work they have put in with us both. Iggy has now become part of our family and I can’t wait to see what adventures we’ll have together and how much more independence she will give me.

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