Lindsey

Lindsey: 18.9.95 – 13.3.10

My best friend in work and retirement. Sadly missed.

Goodbye Cherub. Love Bettie

this was a tribute written in the Guide Dogs magazine, Forward, by a lady about her first guide dog, Lindsey.

Before Lindsey went to work with Bettie, she spent ten months as my guide dog. However, we were not a good match. Lindsey was extremely sensitive and didn’t like to be rushed. At the time I was catching buses to and from work, and I probably rushed Lindsey more than she could cope with. Lindsey’s work deteriorated, and despite some refresher training, as soon as she worked with me again, the problems occurred once more. It was therefore decided that Lindsey wasn’t the right dog for me and she was withdrawn, taken back for re-training and eventually qualified with Bettie.

that time was very hard for me. Guide dogs policy is that if a dog is withdrawn and re-trained for someone else, there can be no further contact with the former guide dog owner. whilst I realise that a clean break is necessary for the sake of the new partnership, I felt very bereft for a while as the training centre wouldn’t tell me anything about her. I think I’d have been happy with just an occasional update. Although I couldn’t continue to work with Lindsey it is always hard to give away a dog that has become such a big part of one’s life,albeit for a short time.

A few months afterwards, I visited a guide dogs open day at the Nottingham centre and my husband at the time saw a lady with a dog that looked remarkably like Lindsey. when we spoke to her we found out that it was indeed Bettie with Lindsey. the thing that struck me was how quiet and calm she was with Lindsey and how responsive Lindsey was to Bettie. It was a bitter sweet meeting for me but it left me with a feeling that Lindsey would be happy and well cared for.

Last week I read Bettie’s entry in forward which left me feeling slightly sad. However, it also left me with closure. Lindsey had obviously stayed with Bettie during her retirement and had been much loved. this was the best I could ever have wished for her.

I’m so glad it worked out for her. RIP Lindsey La La!

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About Mel Griffiths

I live and work in Nottingham, England and am blind. This blog is often centred around things that happen to me because of being blind. This is my space to write and sometimes people will disagree with what I write, but its the one place I have in which to be frank and honest. I also like to reflect on the funnier side of life from time to time.
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2 Responses to Lindsey

  1. Kirsty says:

    Mel

    10 months is a long time to bond with a dog and although she may not have been the right dog in partnership, you obviously cared a lot about her. I’m sorry to hear about her passing and pleased that the knowledge she had a happy life with Bettie has helped you find closure.

    It’s heartwarming to hear you talk about Lindsey in this way, because I believe assistance dogs should be valued for the ‘dog’ part as much as the ‘assistance’ part and clearly that is true of how you felt about Lindsey. Whilst she may not have been the right match for you, this obviously didn’t stop you seeing the ‘dog’ side of her.

    Sweet dreams Lindsey.

  2. melspooner says:

    Hi Kirsty,

    First and foremost a guide dog has to be able to work with me, but I can’t help but get attached to them all and love them for the very different dogs that they all have been. i’m just so glad that bettie obviously loved her too.

    Mel

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