Source: The Weather Network
Thursday, November 6, 2014, 1:14 PM – At almost seven-years-old, Belle, a former lead sled dog, knows no life outside dog sledding.
But six months ago, Belle went blind after being diagnosed with a genetic form of glaucoma.
“They can’t really treat it except to just keep the symptoms at bay,” said Gail Birdsong, who runs the Birdsong Siberian Husky Rescue and sled team.
But while blindness might mean the end of sledding for most dogs, it doesn’t for Belle.
“She doesn’t seem to know she’s blind,” said Jessica Roberts, who’s been handling Belle for the past year.
Roberts said Belle has adapted well to life without eyes — only occasionally bumping into something.
This year Birdsong said Belle will be back in the snow pulling sleds with the other dogs.
“She won’t be a lead dog. She’ll be back maybe up next to the sled, what we call a ‘wheel,'” said Birdsong.
But lead dog or not, Roberts hopes Belle’s story can serve as example to others facing similar challenges.
“Sometimes we have disabilities and, you know, it is tough, but there’s also a lot of things we can enjoy,” said Roberts.