How old is a puppy when it is placed with a volunteer puppy raiser?A puppy is about eight weeks old.
- What breeds of dogs do you use?
The most commonly used breed for guide dogs is the Labrador Retriever. They can be
placed in every environment and with any person because they are such a versatile breed.
German Shepherds and Golden retrievers are also used, but to a smaller extent.
- Where do the dogs come from?
The puppies come from Guiding Eye's own breeding colony located in Patterson New York.
They are bred for health, confidence and temperament.
- How long does a puppy stay with the puppy raiser?
A puppy usually remains in the puppy raiser home until it is between 14 to
18 months old.
This can vary depending on the puppy's development or the training school's need for dogs.
- Do you need any previous dog training experience to be a volunteer puppy raiser?
No, but it is helpful if you have a dog, or have had one in the past.
- Does a GEB puppy require any special food?
Guiding Eyes has specifically chosen some brands of high quality dry dog food to use.
Guide dog puppies should never get human food or table scraps.
- Where does a GEB puppy go if the raiser is out of town?
Raisers in puppy raising regions often trade off and supervise each other's puppies when
raisers are away. In some cases, the puppy can, with the area coordinator's approval,
accompany the raiser on the trip to enhance the puppy's socialization.
- Who pays for the puppy's expenses?
Guiding Eyes supplies collars, id tags, a crate, medical care and vaccinations. The puppy
raiser is responsible for the puppy's food, toys and incidental equipment such as food
bowls and grooming tools. The raiser is also responsible for purchasing any flea or tick
medication including sprays, dips and powders.
- Do all the puppies make it as guide dogs?
Not all dogs have the ability to take responsibility for a blind person's safety. Some are
more suitable as a pet than a guide.
- What happens to puppies that don't make it as guide dogs?
Career change dogs are placed in other careers such as detection or therapy dogs. Or a dog
released from our program may be a loved pet going back to the
raiser or another adopter.
- What happens when the guide dog gets too old to work?
Most Guiding Eyes graduates keep their retired dogs as a member of the family or place
them with close friends. In the few situations when the retired guide is available for placement, Guiding
Eyes contacts the dog's raiser. If the raiser can't be located, we have a waiting list of
people who have applied to adopt a retired guide dog.
- Are there other ways to help raise a puppy if I can't make a commitment for eighteen
Yes. There is always a need for puppy sitters, and sometimes for starter homes that will
raise a puppy until it can be placed with a permanent puppy raiser.
- What you should do when you
someone with a guide dog.
- More information on Raising a Guide Dog
puppy for Guiding Eyes for the Blind.