Service dogs get eye checkups

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Service dogs provide help in so many ways: Some dogs provide eyesight, while others provide love and emotional support. Monday, BluePearl Veterinary Partners in Clearwater returned the love, offering eye exams for more than two dozen service dogs.

The veterinarians at BluePearl say the exams are important because a guide dog can't help a visually-impaired owner see without having healthy eyes himself. 

"Their eyes are such an important part of their job.  We want to make sure they're healthy," said Jessica Stine, a veterinary ophthalmologist.

Among the dogs being checked out was "Liberty", a 5-year-old yellow Lab from Southeastern Guide Dogs. 

"I love that they do this, because for our graduates, our dogs are our clients' eyes," said Kayla Cook with Southeastern Guide Dogs.

Monday's exams were part of a nationwide program sponsored by the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.