Panek is the president and CEO of Guiding Eyes for the Blind, an organization that breeds, raises and trains guide dogs for free.
Panek had previously relied on human guides to help him in races. He ran the half marathon with the dogs to raise funds that will provide blind athletes with running service dogs.
The dogs underwent months of marathon training prior to the race, the organization said. Challenges included coordinating footwork and helping Panek avoid other runners and potholes, Panek said in an interview with WABC on March 14.
Gus finished the last three miles of the relay, earning himself a medal at the finisher’s line.
After the race, he retired as Panek’s guide dog. Gus previously helped Panek complete a five-mile race in Central Park in December 2017. /ra