The Special Reason Why These Australian Shepherds Are Attached at the Hip (and Heart)

They don’t only lean on each other metaphorically.

Editor’s Note: America’s Best Pet Pals is a nationwide search for the animal friendships that make you laugh, cry, and purr. Reader’s Digest will be honoring the best in pet friendship in print, online, and on social media. This is a finalist in our “Rescued Animals” category. Scroll to the bottom to cast your vote for Scout and Bandit. To see our full list of finalists, go to rd.com/petpals and vote in each category.

Scout was an only fur child for a year when we realized that even though she goes on daily runs and has three human kids to play with, the Aussie in her required more activity than we could provide. We contacted a local Aussie rescue organization and happened upon Bandit.

Neglected, flea-ridden, and hungry, Bandit was in desperate need of love and care, and acted like the light had gone out in his young puppy life. We were originally told he had minimal sight loss, but a trip to the veterinarian revealed more vision loss than we’d thought. From the beginning, Scout naturally took over the role of Bandit’s personal seeing-eye dog.

To guide Bandit, Scout always walks on his left side, so he knows she’s there as that’s the eye out of which his vision is best. They move together as one, leaning on each other as a friend for Scout and necessity for Bandit. On the occasion when Scout has been gone from the house and Bandit has stayed behind, he’s lost without her and waits by the door until she returns.

While they provide each other hours of entertainment and companionship, Scout has provided Bandit with a new, loving friendship, as well as the ability to see for him. Scout is the light he so desperately needed.