A big step in an important journey.
Hello, dear reader. Do you like dogs? Of course, you do. Only human beings lacking a soul don't love a very good boy or very good girl, respectively. Dogs are incredible. This is just scientific fact.
Now that's out of the way – how would you feel about the prospect of raising a puppy as part of its journey to become an guide or assistance dog with Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind?
If you're interested in this noble calling and you live in Leinster and Munster, read on.
Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind is currently recruiting for puppy raising volunteers in the following areas:
- Kildare (Maynooth, Naas, Sallins, Newbridge, Leixlip only)
- Wicklow (Blessington, Bray, Delgany, Greystones only)
- Meath (Ratoath and Dunboyne only)
Volunteers would foster a puppy from eight weeks of age until approximately 12 to 14 months old. At eight weeks, puppies begin their journey to becoming a guide dog for a person who is vision impaired, or an assistance dog for a family with a child with autism.
The puppy will live with your family in your home, with supervisors providing basic rules and obedience training. At approximately 14 months old, the puppy will then move to a training centre as they begin the hard work towards graduation.
If you're interested, you'll need to meet the following criteria:
- No more than two other dogs in the home. They must be sociable, well behaved and neutered/spayed
- The puppy must not be left alone for prolonged periods of time (max four hours but this is age dependent)
- You must have access to a secured outdoor area
- Children in the home must be over five years of age
- You must be 18 years or older, but the whole family can get involved
- Must have internet access and be able to use Zoom platform