An important milestone has been reached, with guide dogs being allowed onto subway trains in Beijing. The new rule came into effect May 1.
Before veteran guide dog Lucky’s first day on board a Beijing subway train, he gets a little light refreshment and grooming. Having been refused numerous times before, things were easy going this time round for Lucky and his owner. Once on the train, Lucky sits quietly, no threat at all to people on board.
Even though as per rules, guide dogs have been allowed in public places for the past three years, difficulties remain in the way of its implementation.
Repeated explanation was needed this time round. Even with the landmark regulation, blind people routinely face an uphill task.
Guide dogs are a rare sight in China. The country is home to 17 million visually impaired people, but has fewer than 100 guide dogs, a tiny fraction of four million guide dogs throughout the rest of the world.