A Guide Dog team consists of a dog and a person. The dog has been specially trained to assist the mobility of a person who is blind. The dog is trained to lead, obey commands, avoid distractions, and disobey a command if it would put the team in danger. The person is responsible for directing the dog by keeping a mental map, being the leader of the team and providing care and praise. Through teamwork and companionship, they share a bond of trust and love.
Guide Dogs for the Blind nurtures this special relationship by providing a place for Guide Dogs and people who are blind to come together in the presence of top trainers and dedicated volunteers. Choosing the Guide Dog lifestyle is a serious decision that goes beyond mobility, which is why we're so committed to pairing the right dog with the right person. Extensive training ensures that the team is compatible in every area--from communication styles to personalities. At the end of the intensive program, students find not just a mobility partner, but a soul mate.
The Focus is on You
All services and benefits are offered free of charge, including: transportation to and from Guide Dogs' campus; room and board; dog equipment and, of course, your Guide Dog.
While in class, you'll live in a lovely facility and comfortable surroundings. Dorms have private rooms; libraries (complete with books on tape and in Braille); music, exercise and computer rooms; descriptive videos; and wireless internet access. You'll be able to choose from a delicious menu at mealtimes, and we make every effort to meet the needs of those with special dietary restrictions.
After graduating from class, students and their Guide Dogs are ready to tackle challenges life throws their way. However, we realize that there may be some bumps in the road. Therefore, involvement with alumni doesn't end on graduation day. A unique, comprehensive program of alumni support services ensures that GDB graduates and their dogs are supported throughout the life of the team.