Saturday, October 25, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Sparkle drops in at school

On the last day of school, Sparkle the Seeing Eye pup pays a visit to a pre-kindergarten class.

Sparkle drops in at school

Proper socialization is the linchpin of Sparkle's education, so what better place to visit than our son's pre-kindergarten class on the last day of school. We got  advance approval from the principal and brought Sparkle in through a side door so as not to provoke a general uproar by walking her down a main hallway.

Sparkle was polite and well-behaved, and the children were thrilled to see a pup in their midst. Daughter Betsy and I fielded some questions about raising Seeing Eye pups, wished everyone a great summer, then slipped back out and walked around the outside of the building to the principal's office to say thanks.

While Seeing Eye dogs in harness are allowed by the federal Disabilities Act to go anywhere that's open to the public, we depend on courtesy to afford us access. We've rarely been turned away from entering a store or other public place. Thank you to everyone who makes us feel welcome!  

George Carter
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About this blog
George Carter, The Inquirer's weekend national/foreign editor, has always counted dogs among his closest companions. According to family lore, he learned to walk by clinging to the side of a saintly patient mutt named Spanker. In turn, one of his earliest hazy memories is of tossing treats to the family dogs gathered expectantly on the porch of their Maryland farmhouse. It was only natural then, that when George saw a newspaper ad looking for families to raise puppies for the Seeing Eye of Morristown, N.J., he bit at the chance. From the start, it has been a family project, with teenage daughter Betsy as the official puppy-raiser. First there was Porter, a big-hearted yellow Lab born on Memorial Day 2004. A few years later, the Carters raised Velma, a gorgeous Lab/golden cross. Just a couple weeks ago, Velma's 7-week-old daughter Sparkle arrived as the latest family charge. George, Betsy and mom Cathy are thrilled that Sparkle is from Velma's very first litter. You can reach George Carter at 215-854-2411 or by clicking here. Reach George at gcarter@phillynews.com.

George Carter
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