Smiley, the blind therapy dog, lights up community with joy
A blind therapy dog named Smiley is living up to his name by brining joy to a small community in Stouffville, Ontario.
The 12-year-old Golden Retriever was born without eyes, but it hasn't stopped him from living a full life.
His owner, Joanne George, rescued him in 2004 when he was just a pup from an overcrowded puppy mill.
Smiley's initial transition wasn't easy, but after several months of playing with George's happy-go-lucky Great Dane, he came out of his shell, according to The Huffington Post.
Since then, Smiley has been all smiles -- literally.
George, who's a professional behavioral dog trainer, has taught Smiley how to comfort people in need like elderly patients in nursing homes.
"He does something to people," George told The Huffington Post. "People say they feel like a different person after meeting Smiley."
Smiley also takes routine trips to libraries and schools to visit disabled children.
"These kids who were born with different disabilities are able to see that dogs, too, are born with the same disabilities," George said. "It's important for them to see that Smiley has overcome, and that he's happy."
Two thumbs up (or paws) to Smiley for being an inspiration to us all!
See adorable photos of Smiley: