Petty thieves would prey on partially-sighted Kirstin Disney before guide dog Quiz came into her life seven years ago.

As Kirstin’s sight deteriorated, Quiz took on more and more responsibility, saving her owner from potentially fatal everyday hazards.

A perforated stomach last August saw nine-year-old Quiz endure major surgery and a week in hospital, but thankfully she pulled through.

She is now nominated in the Extraordinary Life of a Working Dog category of the Friends for Life awards at the famous Crufts dog show.

“Even the vets thought she wouldn’t make it, but she did,” says Kirstin.

“I was full of fear, it was absolutely horrendous.

“But because of the meds she was on as a result and because of her age, they decided to retire her.

“Nobody’s told her she’s retired and I still go with her everywhere with a white stick.

“I’m not totally blind but my eyesight has got a lot worse in recent years.

“I got scared of doing anything without her.

“A stick can’t do everything a dog can.”

Friends for Life is a celebration of just how much dogs change and improve people’s lives. Five of the finalists will got to Crufts, held once again at the NEC in Birmingham, where the winner will be announced on Sunday March 11.

People can vote for the dog they want to win by visiting the Crufts website, with the victor receiving £5,000 from the Kennel Club Charitable Trust to donate to a dog charity of their choice and runners-up £1,000.

Before adopting Quiz, Kirstin was scared to leave the house after thieves stole phones and a handbag on several occasions.

And criminality is not the only hazard Kirstin faces, as even crossing a road can lead to a fatal accident.

“I would stop and have a cup of coffee somewhere and then get up to go and my phone would be gone,” she added.

“Sometimes there are roadworks and the pavements are blocked. It’s worse these days with hybrid cars because you can’t hear them.

“Before her, I was lost.”

Kirstin recalls one particular occasion where Quiz stepped in, after spotting a cage blocking her way in the middle of a busy road crossing and steadfastly refusing to cross.

“They say go with your dog, even if they always want to go to the pet shop,” Kirstin joked.

“But she stopped dead and pulled back. She’s just amazing.

“The bond we have is just so strong.

“She saved my life.”