Surama Lázaro Terol
Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, España
This article opens the door to in-depth anthropological research work about a particular human-dog relationship. Based on digital visual ethnography and critical animal studies, we draw from the picture of a female guide dog at the forefront. The picture production, inclusion, and spreading on the worldwide web highlight the varied purposes granted not only to that image, but to all dogs working as guides to blind people. This allows us to glimpse other contents, and to explain practices used to get guide dogs. Additionally, it allows us to observe virtual spaces, where narratives and representations around their lives are built, as well as discourse analysis and controversies about how legitimate is to use guide dogs. In this journey, these dogs’ histories need to navigate between the animal, the human, and the instrumental.
Keywords: guide dogs, digital visual ethnography, animal critical studies, human-animal relations.