A trainer named Todd Jurek and fellow dog handler, Alvarado, avoided certain death from an out of control vehicle solely because of the heroic actions of a yellow Labrador Retriever guide dog in the last stage of training named O'Neil.
O'Neil Is A Hero And A Life-Saver
Two trainers from the Guide Dogs For the Blind situated in San Raphael, California, were on the last leg of their final training assessment of the yellow Lab as a guide dog candidate when the accident occurred. The visually impaired consider their guide dogs as life-changers, which they most certainly are. In this case, life-saver is a more appropriate moniker, for had the dog not intervened, the two trainers would most certainly have been killed or at the very least, critically injured. (See: Blind Elephant Seal Rescues Rescuer.)
O'Neil alerted Jurek in time to push the blind-folded Alvarado out of harm's way. He told a CNN affiliate: "It was just an unbelievable sight to see something going backwards, barreling down the side-walk. I think O'Neil heard the wheels come upon the curb. The dog looked before I did. You cannot train a dog for such a dramatic incident." (See: Blind Dog Teaches Children To See.)
According to the San Jose Mercury News, a 93-year-old woman was attempting to parallel park when she lost control of her car and began driving in reverse down the sidewalk . She smashed into a store window, narrowly missing by inches the dog and the two trainers. The driver continued across the street and then crashed into a store front. Luckily, no one was hurt. The driver was scheduled for a re-examination to determine her ability to continue operating a motor vehicle. Needless to say, O'Neil finished training with flying colors after it was determined that the dog had not t been traumatized by the experience. The brave animal was soon placed with someone in need. (See: Caesar The Seeing-Eye Camel.)
Guide Dogs For The Blind
This fine organization also known as GDB, has been in continuous operation since 1942. It's sole purpose is the provision of partnerships between people in need, dogs and communities. Its range of services include the preparation of highly qualified guide dogs to serve individuals who are blind or have low visual capacity throughout the United States and Canada. This organization offers its many options, which include personalized training services and financial assistance for veterinary care to its needy clients, free of charge. They do not receive government funding and rely completely on the support of generous donors and volunteers. (See: Guide Dog Saves Blind Man From Fall Onto Subway Tracks.)
Kudos to O'Neil and the Guide Dogs for The Blind.
Keep up the good work!
Source: NBC Bay Area