The Real-Life Barbie and Ken Are a Human and Dog Duo Taking on the World Together (Exclusive)

Barbara “Barbie” Bielinski met the Ken of her dreams when she was paired with a Labrador retriever named Ken as her new guide dog

<p>Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski</p>

Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski

This Ken is a guide dog!

on the Barbie the movie’s opening weekend, as the world embraces Barbiecore, the “Barbieheimer” double feature, and Ryan Gosling’s “Ken-ergy,” Guiding Eyes for the Blind is celebrating a different Barbie and Ken.

The nonprofit, which trains and provides dogs to people with vision loss at no cost to the individual, recently found an ideal guide dog match for Barbara “Barbie” Bielinski in a black Labrador retriever named Ken.

“I was blind and used a white cane for years before I ever had a guide dog. I had always assumed I would make the switch someday, and I don’t know why I waited so long. I finally had a serious talk with someone very familiar with Guiding Eyes for the Blind, and then I realized it was time for me to get going and finally bring the blessing of a guide dog into my life,” Bielinski tells PEOPLE.

Related: Everything to Know About the ‘Barbie’ Movie

Guiding Eyes for the Blind first matched Bielinski with “sweet Loretta,” who “guided carefully, like a little Saint who knew she had a big responsibility on her shoulders.”

Loretta worked as Bielinski’s guide dog for years before retiring in the spring of 2022. After Loretta’s retirement, Bielinksi met Ken, an equally charming canine with a different guiding style.

<p>Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski</p>

Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski

“Ken guides with a kind of gusto. He likes being big and in charge,” Bielinksi says.

The Lab’s outgoing attitude has helped Bielinksi settle into life in a new state. Bielinksi, who is retired from a career in information technology, recently moved to Colorado to be closer to family and friends.

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Ken has helped with this transition by eagerly taking part in outdoor activities and showing Bielinksi plenty of affection.

“Ken is a running guide, and we run together. Now that we’ve gotten to know each other, I am so happy with how sweet and loving he is at home,” Ken’s pet parent shares.

<p>Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski</p>

Courtesy of Barbara Bielinski

Bielinksi added that “Ken is exuberant and playful. He gets serious when he is working, but he likes to kick back and enjoy himself at home. He likes to chase a ball or play with the neighbor dogs. When he’s tired, he comes over, licks my ear, and then lays down with his head on my feet.”

Related: Matted Dog Found in Cornfield Goes Through Stunning Transformation After Losing Pounds of Fur

Bielinksi and Ken hope to see the Barbie movie soon and that their personal Barbie and Ken story inspires kindness in others.

“I hope people realize that guide dogs enjoy working. All the attention and self-control they exhibit when they lead a blind person along a sidewalk is fun and rewarding for them. I wish people would notice our interactions with them when they are working and also see how much we love them up as soon as they are off duty. How are dogs acting just like any other happy pet as soon as they’ve hung up their harness at the end of the day,” Bielinksi says.

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