(BLIND PETS/DOGS) After Dorie Stratton found a dog abandoned in a Walmart parking lot in her home state of Georgia, she rescued the Scottish Terrier and brought him home. Named Scottie Boy, Stratton discovered that her new animal companion was blind. “He’d bump into things, and he’d cry,” Stratton said.
Unfamiliar with how to help her visually impaired friend, Stratton began researching “blind dog collars” until she came up with an idea of her own. Determined to help her companion, she contacted a local businesswoman and friend, Ellen Burgess, who runs an alterations shop and was guardian to a blind dog who passed away from bumping his head too many times. The two compassionate women spent six weeks constructing and experimenting with ideas for aiding unseeing canines.
Called the the “Halo Vest,” Stratton and Burgess invented a wearable “bumper guard” to prevent blind dogs from colliding with unseen objects. The product consists of an adjustable vest that goes around the canine’s back with an attached aluminum wire and plastic tubing at the neck that forms a semi circle around the animal’s face. The “halo” works as a preventative measure and alerts dogs of an unseen object before they bump their head.
After her Vet Ophthalmologist enthusiastically responded to the invention, Stratton now sells the product to provide blind dogs with the resources for an improved life. Each “Halo Vest” is handmade and can be purchased for a dog of any size. Stratton attests that when her Scottie wears the vest, “he is comfortable and calm.”
Stratton and Burgess have created an amazing product to help blind companions. You can purchase a vest of your own through the Halos for Paws website where “they understand the importance of making sure blind dogs are as comfortable as possible.”
— Dori Edwards, exclusive to Global Animal