This Man took his Blind Dog on a 1100 mile Hike! The results were amazing!

Katana_the_Blind_Dog_HikingMeet Katana, an 8 year old Shibu Inu, who lost her vision when Glaucoma clouded her left eye. She was in the middle of the 2650 mile hike of the Pacific Crest Trail when she had to be rushed for surgery.

Now, meet Kyle Rohrig, 29, who knew it would be risky to take Katana along on the long hikes, but he refused to go alone. The reason was beautiful - He needed to get Katana's confidence back.

When Katana lost her vision in the right eye, she became extra cautious. "She was very jerky in her movements and would second guess herself at every turn" said Kyle. 

"It would sometimes take her minutes to find the courage to hop up or down from the couch or even to cross a threshold from indoors to outdoors or vice versa – and she always needed gratuitous verbal encouragement to do any of it. 

All of this seemed pretty normal given her new circumstances, but due to her personality and past accomplishments this was heartbreaking to witness".

Kyle knew he had to do something: take her along the 1100 mile hike on the Florida Trail. 
Katana the blind dog and Kyle on hiking

‘Taking Katana on the Florida Trail as a recently blind dog was a calculated risk,’ Kyle explained. ‘In order for her to be as successful at being blind as possible – she needed to “live” her blindness. ‘To explore and reach her full potential, she needed to be worked with full time and in constantly changing and evolving environments/landscapes. ‘Sure, she could memorize the layout of a house and live out the rest of her days in familiar comfort but then she would only be great at navigating one place. ‘When I brought Katana out here, it was either to sink or swim. The only catch being… I wasn’t going to let her sink.
We’d been eating and sleeping her blindness for months, but once out there on the trail, we’d be breathing it as well.

Kyle and Katana the blind dog on a hike
Over the next 72 days, Kyle and Katana crossed busy highways, faced alligators, snakes and disappearing paths along the way. The plan worked – as they continued along their hike, Katana regained her confidence, falling back in love with adventure. Katana hiked more than 200 miles of the trail herself, but Kyle carried her for the remaining travels. Kyle said: ‘She stopped second-guessing herself and her surroundings and began taking big bites out of life like she used to. She gained back her spark, as well as the flair that has always made her unique.

Kyle and Katana the blind dog went on a hike

The World needs more people like Kyle. Do you agree? Let me know in the comments below :

Dog Water Bottle Dispenser


3 comments

  • What a lovely story, a truly wonderful man Kyle x

    Sarah
  • It’s really a story about unconditional love .What an inspiration to all of us that adore our dogs and would like to think that we would go to the end of the world for them to see somebody who actually has.🐩

    FELICITY FEBERY
  • Wow,what an amazing and truly beautiful story !!.I’m in floods of tears but all for the right reasons.To have that trust and relationship is just beautiful after such a tragic incident for Katana.The pictures just melt your heart and bless them both.Having just lost my best friend,soulmate and gorgeous Zee (husky) after 11 1/2 years through cancer and how much she was my life,24/7,it was very emotional to read such a beautiful story.Kyle and Katana,you are both very special and thank you for sharing ..Awesome !!!!!

    Jamie Forsyth

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published