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Let's Go! Announcing GDB's New Puppy Raising Guidebook

Wednesday May 01, 2024

A very happy and very fluffy Lab x Golden guide dog puppy.

Guide Dogs for the Blind is excited to share that after years of learning, listening, and commitment to transformation, our Puppy Raising team has completely reimagined GDB's puppy raising program. The program is now fully launched and being put into practice by our dedicated puppy raising volunteers.

We have created a comprehensive section of GDB's website called the Puppy Raising Guidebook to host the program's innovative curriculum and updated guidelines, policies, and resources. The Guidebook contains everything someone needs to know about raising a guide dog puppy, with a focus on helping GDB puppies and puppy raising volunteers reach their fullest potential together. We invite you to take a look!

Click to visit the Puppy Raising Guidebook

Hallmarks of the program include:

  • A focus on creating confidence, resilience, and a joy of learning in both puppies and people.
  • A curriculum called FUNdamentals - and we mean it! The FUNdamentals introduce Adventure Walks and games as methods for learning, with an emphasis on exploring the world and developing an understanding of each individual puppy's needs.
  • Recognizing what anyone who has had an opportunity to spend time with a dog already knows and what scientific evidence shows: that dogs are sentient beings, capable of emotional states such as pleasure, happiness, fear, and anxiety. This program brings even more focus to the physical and psychological needs of our dogs and puppies and ensures that what we do enhances their quality of life.
  • Considering ways that the people in our program can thrive as well. This program is easy to understand, fun, inclusive, flexible, approachable, accessible, and innovative.
  • Promoting more personal responsibility through our new Puppy Raising Guiding Principles. We've adjusted the policies and guidelines of the program in a dedicated effort to focus on the most important things and allow for a more personalized experience. Our goal is to give people from all walks of life and circumstances an opportunity to be involved and successful.

The program and Guidebook are intended to be a resource for all. As a member of the International Guide Dog Federation (IGDF) and Assistance Dogs International (ADI), we are proud to collaborate and share our knowledge and expertise with the world. We have added Terms of Use Guidelines for anyone who would like to utilize the Guidebook contents. What could be better than contributing to the success of others in raising puppies that are comfortable and confident moving through the world, whatever their future might be?

We are incredibly grateful to all the people and organizations who have helped bring this reimagined program to life. We have learned and incorporated so much from feedback provided by puppy raising volunteers; insights from the considerable expertise of the GDB team; resources from the IGDF and ADI, and research and best practices from other related organizations and animal experts.

We cannot wait to see the confident, resilient, and happy puppies, dogs, and people this program can create. Let's Go!


For more information about how you can get involved in puppy raising, please visit the Puppy Raising Volunteer page.

Categories: Dog Care & Health, GDB Community, Puppy Raising