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Andy Muxlow of Cwmaman is walking 200 miles in March with guide dog Ernie

WALKIES are a part of daily life for all guide dog owners – and this one is no exception. Andy Muxlow, of Cwmaman, is so delighted with new guide dog Ernie that he has vowed to walk a total of 200 miles with him during March to raise money for Guide Dogs Cymru.


Accompanying them on their daily walks is Andy’s partner Simone Parker-McManmon, who has set up a JustGiving page to make donating easier.


Andy, who’s 50 and originally from Droitwich, has been blind all his life due to nystagmus, myopia and cataracts. He was a live-in pupil at Bridgend School for the Blind from the ages of four to 16 where he enjoyed helping the caretaker to wind up the clock in the tower.


Ernie, a labrador retriever, is Andy’s fourth guide dog. Andy said: “He’s a much-loved pet as well as my eyes. I'm very grateful to Guide Dogs for the support and help they provide, and I want to give something back.


“I was in my early 20s when I had my first dog Wills, a Labrador who lived till he was 16 and a half. They are good fun dogs. It’s a pleasure to go for a free run with Ernie. We take him to the Country Park and he starts whining with excitement. We walk around the pool and I can hear him diving in. Afterwards he jumps straight back in the boot. He's very obedient.”


Andy is a keen golfer who played for the England and Wales Blind Golf Association, and he is looking forward to resuming the sport. “I just want to go and play one or two times a month and build friendships,” he said.


Andy is also a fan of local radio and can be heard ringing in to the Wynne Evans Show on BBC Radio Wales. “We have a good laugh and he wants to know how we are getting on with the walk,” said Andy. “We’ve done 100 miles already and raised £240, including some anonymous donations.”


To contribute, please visit


Simone Parker-McManmon is fundraising for Guide Dogs (