Paula Abdul Gives ‘Idol’ Contestant Guide Dog
The “American Idol” judge surprises visually impaired competitor Scott MacIntyre.
Posted: May 14, 2009, 5 a.m. EDT
Scott MacIntyre may have been kicked off “American Idol” five weeks ago, but the visually impaired singer still has a huge fan in judge Paula Abdul.
Paula Abdul with Dick Van Patten
of Natural Balance Pet Foods
Abdul surprised MacIntyre with a guide dog Friday, when Abdul lured MacIntyre to a National Guide Dog Month event under the guise that he was there to sing.
“Are you serious? Thank you so much,” MacIntyre told Abdul at the event upon learning about the dog. MacIntyre then walked – or “test drove,” as he joked – two Labrador Retrievers from Guide Dogs of America.
Abdul had hinted about the surprise the night MacIntyre was voted off the competition. MacIntyre told “Access Hollywood” that Abdul had pulled him aside and said, “I have a wonderful surprise for you in a couple of weeks.”
MacIntyre, who has 2 percent field of vision and gets around with the use of a cane, will be matched with a proper canine partner and attend a 28-day training course when he wraps the “American Idol” tour Sept. 15.
“We have to find a dog that really likes loud music,” Abdul joked.
Abdul, Natural Balance Pet Foods, Petco and independent pet stores nationwide are teaming to raise funds and awareness for guide dogs, with more than $2 million expected to be raised during May.
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