First, I need to say that I have an animal-phobia, so I can't touch animals, even though I love watching them so much.
I work as a part-time teaching and research assistant with a Lecturer, who is visually impaired. She has a trained guide dog, who is one of the most beautiful creatures I've ever seen. The dog is so smart, tender and doesn't make any noise. She eats at specific times and sleeps as long as her owner is working. The dog understands very well that when she is on her harness, this means that she is working now, so she has to lead her owner, and not try to play with anyone.
At first, I was scared, but now, this dog loves me. She looks for me when we are walking, to make sure that all her group is walking behind her, she plays with me and tries to kiss me. I still do not touch her, but I love her so much.
These guide dogs are trained by guidedogs.co.uk charity. The organization breeds them from specific breeds, like the Labrador, because they are smart and love people, and then sponsors them from birth to death, even when the dog is with an owner. The total costs of the dog throughout his/her life is about £50,000.
I am so fond of this organization and the role it plays. People can donate and sponsor a certain puppy on their website, starting from £1/week. The organization sends donors the puppy's photos that they are sponsoring, so that each person can see their sponsored puppy throughout his/her life.
When I see a guide dog now, I feel happy and I am not afraid anymore. Thanks to this special dog that made me love her, and all her co-guide dogs. This is a photo of the dog I am sponsoring, Biscuit. I am donating a very trivial amount to Biscuit every month. Since I cannot actually adopt any pets, therefore, I consider Biscuit my puppy, who is going to live with someone else, for a better cause.
I believe that we all have needs, but some people have needs that cannot be self-fulfilled. The people with special needs deserve to lead a normal live. Animals also deserve to live well, be happy and feel that that people love them and the role they play.
If you want to help, please visit guidedogs.co.uk. You will get a very cool certificate like this. But more importantly, you will be helping a puppy, and a person who is visually impaired.
I definitely wish that one day there will be a similar organization like Guide Dogs in Egypt. Even though I think some of the trained guide dogs are sent to developing countries, but I totally believe that the respect and support for people with special needs in Egypt have to increase, so that they are enabled to live normally, purposefully and happily.