Lawrence & Pepper

Lawrence & Pepper

I was matched with my Guide Dog Pepper in September 2023 and it’s easy to say he has been a great success.   

I first applied to get a Guide Dog in August 2022 as I was heading to college and felt this was the right time for me.   

Even before I got a Guide Dog, I was already quite active and I traveled often. It was on a trip with my friend who already had a Guide Dog, where I saw how much one could help me. The way his dog could navigate and manoeuvre in new places was incredible to me, and it reaffirmed my decision to apply. 

Then in September, I was given the call and subsequently matched with my now Guide Dog Pepper. I finished my training in October and since then it has been all go. 

Looking back six months later there has definitely been a lot of change.  For me, the biggest difference isn’t what I do but how I do it.  Before with a long cane, I would have to constantly sweep it from side to side while mentally checking off landmarks on my walk. Now with Pepper, it is as simple as letting him lead the way. 

I remember one of my first walks with Pepper thinking how organic it was, not having to sweep or hear the cane and just being able to appreciate the world around me. When people ask what the best thing about a Guide Dog is, I tell them it is the freedom to let my mind wander while myself and Pepper wander through the world.    

So far, our wandering has brought us to Birmingham, Basel and Strasbourg where I will be going for an Erasmus this year. I’m incredibly excited for what’s to come, knowing Pepper will be there every step of the way.

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