Some of our dogs are better suited for jobs other than guidework. Certain specially-selected dogs are chosen to become K9 Buddies to blind children; others continue to support our mission by becoming Community Canines with agencies and organizations for the blind, search and rescue, companions for the blind who can no longer have a guide and other capacities, including hearing dogs.
Our goal is to maximize each dog's potential. Labradors and Golden Retrievers are working breeds and they are often most happy when given a job to do.
Our staff selects dogs that are not destined to become mobility partners for placement as K9 Buddies for legally blind children and as Community Canines with blindness professionals and agencies to provide companionship and improve quality of life. Community Canines are placed with blindness professionals working with children in schools or in the community.
Our goal is also to maximize our impact on quality of life through partnerships with these wonderful, loving canines.The dogs come from Guide Dogs' own colony, but are not qualified to work as mobility assistance dogs.The dogs available to be placed as Community Canines and K9 Buddies are black and yellow Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, and Labrador Retriever/Golden Retriever cross breeds.Most are young dogs that are unsuitable to be Guide Dogs for medical or behavioral reasons, but would make excellent companions. Guide Dogs for the Blind strives to match each individual dog with a home that meets the specific needs of both the dog and the adopter.
What others say about the K9 Buddy Program: "Although not a mobility dog, the K9 Buddy placed in our home has made a huge impact on our family. Since they've become a pair, our daughter has done better in school, has more self confidence, and her relationships with her classmates have improved."