For each of the past five years during England’s National Guide Dog Week, Pat Crawford has come to Lakenheath Elementary School with her faithful guide Stella to teach kids about what it’s like to be blind, and how guide dogs help.

With Stella recently retired, last Tuesday was a day of firsts for Crawford’s new guide, Sweetie, a 2-year-old Labrador, and for throngs of young Lakenheath students seeing a working dog for the first time. It was a day that brought gasps and excited questions from the students — and quickly exhausted the dog.Photos by Ben Murray / Stars and StripesTaylor Stoetzel, 7, tries to read a die with raised bumps as she and Rizelle Saxe, 7, play a game designed for blind children.Taylor Stoetzel reacts after trying to read a die with raised bumps.Exhausted by several hours of repeat presentations and the pressing hands of young students, "Sweetie" rests on Pat Crawford's lap for a minute.Seven-year-olds Keegan Jackson, far right, Jaycee Agnew, center, and Katie Nicholson, lavish some attention on the two-year-old "Sweetie."A young girl tries to get a closer look at a pooped "Sweetie."Slightly overwhelmed by all the attention, "Sweetie" looks to owner Pat Crawford, foreground, for a little comfort while Crawford explains to a class of second graders how she is able to tell time with a special talking watch.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now