My name is Oakley. I'm a black labrador Guide Dog. My human charge is Tracey Clarke (aka Mum). Mum was registered Blind/Severely Visually Impaired in 2011. I have been looking after her since November 2012.
Mum, Dad (Tim) and I live on a narrowboat, named Sola Gratia, on the canals and rivers of the UK. We are the first, and thus far only Guide Dog partnership to be living this nomadic lifestyle. Mum says that, without me, she wouldn't be able to even dream of doing this. I am happy to be so amazing!
Starting on Saturday 4 July 2015, Mum and I are going to start walking from Bath in Somerset, along the 75 miles of the Kennet and Avon Canal to Reading in Berkshire. This is a very exciting prospect for me - I love walking and guiding Mum. After all, it is what I was born to do! For Mum, however, it is a big challenge.
The idea of the Megawalk is to raise at least £5,000 for Guide Dogs for the Blind Association UK. Not just funds though: We want to tell lots of people about the amazing life-changing experience that we Guide Dogs bring to our Visually Impaired humans. To do this, there will be lots of events along the way at key places. At these events, we hope to meet up with as many humans and dogs as possible. The plan is to get some my canine colleagues and some of our future colleagues along to help boost the message. (For some reason humans seem to find puppies even more cute and adorable than me!)
Some important humans at Guide Dogs UK offices in Reading are busy trying to get news of our Megawalk into things called newspapers, on TV and on Radio.