Sign In

Malaysia’s 1st Guide Dog Passes Away After Serving Owner For 6 Years

May 4, 2020

LaShawn was fighting leptospirosis in a veterinary clinic for five days, but sadly lost the battle on Sunday, reported Sin Chew Daily.

The eight-year-old guide dog took his last breath at the clinic alone last night as his owner, Stevens Chan Kum Fai, could not be with him due to the Movement Control Order (MCO).

LaShawn was recognised as the country’s very first guide dog by the Malaysia Book of Records in 2018.

LaShawn was brought into Malaysia from China in 2014 after finishing his guide dog training when he was just two years old

He had been with Chan ever since, who is a visually impaired former entrepreneur.

After losing his sight, Chan founded Dialogue in the Dark (DID) Malaysia – a social enterprise that offers visitors a dining and exhibition experience in pitch-black settings to feel what it is like to be blind.

DID Malaysia also has an academy that provides free training and tuition to disabled youths.

Together with LaShawn, Chan had initiated countless movements and campaigns that help the disabled community in Malaysia.

Last year, Chan started a petition to ask for the government to recognise guide dogs

The campaign urged Putrajaya to allow guide dogs to enter public places and transportation freely.

The petition garnered over 80,000 signatures and was submitted to then deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, urging the government to amend the Disabilities Act 2008 to recognise animals like LaShawn as service dogs for the visually impaired, reported Sin Chew Daily.

“To put it simply, since I have LaShawn, I have never been injured and have become more independent, less reliant on others,” Chan related.

“However, when I go out with LaShawn, I still encounter all kinds of difficulties. Being chased out (of a premise) is very common for me. Perhaps, the concept of guide dogs is a new thing for Malaysians, plus the local government does not recognise guide dogs as legal ‘service dogs’.”

Free Malaysia Today quoted Chan as saying that he will continue fighting for the rights of guide dogs in Malaysia and he expressed his gratitude for the support he gained over the years.

Register Your Dog

  • Most Recent News

    Students Get Therapy Dog

    When middle school students return to class on Jan. 11, they’ll find a new face at the door: Daisy. Daisy is a therapy dog and the personal pet of Rob Kreger, principal of the Rock L. Butler Middle School. The five-year-old golden retriever is not a school pet or mascot, but rather a working dog […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogtor

    Last March, Caroline Benzel, a third-year medical student, began to notice the stress and discomfort her nurse friends were feeling from the pressures of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “[Personal protective equipment] can be really rough on the skin,” Benzel, 31, tells PEOPLE. Benzel and her 3-year-old Rottweiler, Loki (who’s also a therapy dog) hatched a […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dog Pups

    When Stanley the miniature fox terrier’s owner passed away, the little dog started a ‘paw-some’ new role – bringing puppy love to some of the Gold Coast’s oldest residents. After Carinity Cedarbrook Diversional Therapist Julianne Staff adopted Stanley, he began visiting the aged care community at Mudgeeraba as a therapy dog. Therapy dogs help to […]

    Read more

    Puppy Cams

    A nonprofit is providing an unusual form of therapy for those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic – puppy cams! “You spend five minutes with a puppy and try not to smile,” said registered nurse Robin Lingg Lagrone. Lingg Lagrone says watching little furballs wag their tails and prance on their paws helps […]

    Read more

    Pet Committee

    When Moore County’s school doors were abruptly closed earlier in 2020, two- and four-legged volunteers from the Moore County Citizens’ Pet Responsibility Committee (PRC) were in their 12th year of presenting a six-session Pet Responsibility Education Program for fourth-graders. The PRC quickly shifted gears and placed its program materials online as part of a home […]

    Read more

    The Right Rescue Dog

    If your New Year’s resolution is to add a canine family member, good for you. Somewhere out there is the perfect puppy or adult dog for your family. You have a lot of things to think about when you begin to look for that new family member, puppy or dog? Large or small? Purebred or […]

    Read more