Kirkintilloch woman’s tribute to guide dog great

From left, Debbie, Jack, Margaret and Bob. Photo by Starlight Studios.
From left, Debbie, Jack, Margaret and Bob. Photo by Starlight Studios.

A well known local volunteer with Guide Dogs Scotland has paid tribute to her faithful four-legged companion who passed away earlier this year.

Margaret Hutchison’s retired guide dog Jack (13) a black Border Collie/Golden Retriever cross, helped the charity raise more than £15,000 to train new puppies.

Emma Brown of Guide Dogs Scotland, said: “Jack had a lovely gentle, calm nature, making him a firm favourite with children, or those who were more apprehensive of dogs.

“Many pennies and pounds were put in the collecting tin for Guide Dogs thanks to Jack’s charm!”

The pup was partnered with Margaret, who is registered blind, back in 2007. As well as being the East Dunbartonshire woman’s faithful guide, he regularly attended fundraising events and talks, mainly visiting youth groups and schools.

Jack was also the poster boy for the local Talking Newspaper and even had a spot on the catwalk at a fashion show at M&Co to raise cash.

When he retired from his work as a guide dog, Jack went to live with Margaret’s friend, local guide puppy walker Debbie Williamson,

Margaret’s new guide dog, Bob, a Flat Coat Retriever/Golden Retriever cross, had been puppy walked by Debbie, so it was almost like a swap.

Jack continued to accompany Margaret, Debbie and Bob to events for a couple of years after retirement.

Emma added: “Jack was a true champion, raising lots of money and awareness for Guide Dogs throughout his life. He was an exceptional guide dog who touched many lives, leaving special pawprints in hearts of all”.

Margaret, who is also an active member of East Dunbartonshire Visually Impaired People’s Forum, said: “The most recent puppy which we have raised funds to name means so much to both of us. We wanted this latest guide dog puppy to be named in Jack’s memory, and have named him J.J. In our minds, it’s Jack Junior!”