Part-time learner Scott Bailey from Cheshire College – South & West and his trusted companion, Milo the guide dog, made the finals of the Best Friends category in the 2022 Kennel Club Hero Dog Award, which takes place at Crufts each year.
The annual Kennel Club Hero Dog Award celebrates the unique relationship people have with their dogs, and the important role they play throughout people’s lives and the support they give people in the face of adversity.
The ‘Best Friends’ category celebrates a pet dog who has seen its owner through the hardest times, as well as the happiest.
At the age of 27, Scott started to lose his sight after being diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy and was registered blind just three years later. A dairy farmer by trade, Scott was unable to continue working in the industry.
Things began to look up for Scott when he was partnered with guide dog Milo in November 2020 and joined Cheshire College’s Crewe Campus to gain new skills that would help him achieve his dream of becoming a Counsellor. He’s committed to raising awareness and helping others who are experiencing sight loss due to diabetes and hopes to study further at Keele University to achieve his dream.
Deputy Principal and Deputy CEO of Cheshire College, Helen Nellist, says: “The team here at Cheshire College are extremely proud of Scott’s accomplishments so far and the uplifting message he and Milo both spread across the College Campus and within the community. The pair’s journey together demonstrates the power of what can be achieved with the right attitude, support, drive and ambition.”
When discussing being part of this year’s Crufts competition, Scott says: “Milo is already a hero; not just to me, but to my whole family. I think of him as an extension of myself now, he has saved my life in more ways than one physically and mentally. He has enabled me to do things I thought I would never be able to do like go to college and progress onto university. To stand next to Milo at Crufts makes me the proudest person on this earth. Just to get to the finals of Crufts and for Milo to be recognised as the amazing talent he is, is a reward itself!”
You can take a look back at all updates from the duration of the competition on Milo’s Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/GuidedogteamMilo.
As the largest provider of post-16 education in the region with Campuses in Crewe, Ellesmere Port and Chester, Cheshire College has over 11,000 learners and 1,000 Apprentices and works with more than 500 local, national and international employers to offer a range of courses from Entry Level to Level 7. To find out more, visit www.ccsw.ac.uk.