Fidelco Guide Dog Client: Quinn Howard and his Guide Dog Yuri! He shares his story and how he overcame his fear of dogs and how Yuri has become a part of his family.
Quinn Howard and “Yuri”
Quinn Howard has been partnered with his first Fidelco guide dog, “Yuri,” since early 2022. Quinn says, “Being part of my community is important. When Yuri and I are out together, people include me in the conversation.”
It was community that led Quinn to Fidelco and sparked his interest in applying for a guide dog. At gatherings of the National Federation of the Blind, Quinn met Fidelco clients Jessica Beecham and James Brown and noticed their interactions with their guide dogs. As a lifelong white cane user, Quinn’s interest grew as he imagined the sense of independence and connection with others a guide dog could bring to his life.
Quinn says before he received his guide dog, Yuri, “People avoided me when I was using my cane because they wanted to be careful and stay out of my way. These experiences pushed me toward my decision to apply for a Fidelco guide dog.” Quinn and Yuri now confidently walk and travel to meet with friends and family and for Quinn’s job in a busy metropolitan area.
After graduating from college, Quinn was hired as a Vocational Counselor with the TennesseeDepartment of Human Services. He was promoted to his current position of Field Supervisor andis responsible for hiring and training counselors to connect people with vision loss with services that help them live with greater independence. Yuri accompanies Quinn on the 90-minute commute by busto Quinn’s Nashville office. The team also frequently travels throughout Middle Tennessee for Quinn’s job. Quinn shares, “Yuri helps me to go directly where I need to be.”