National Guide Dog Month | Guide Dogs for the Blind Skip to main content

National Guide Dog Month

Friday September 01, 2023

Three guide dogs

Every September, we celebrate the life-changing impact of guide dogs. At GDB, we believe that everyone deserves to move through the world safely and confidently and to live the life that they want to live. This is why our passionate community employs innovative practices to create these partnerships and advocates for the policy reforms that change how the world views blindness and disability.

In honor of National Guide Dog Month, here are some things that you can do from home or in your daily life to create more inclusive communities for guide dog users and people who are blind or visually impaired. Because when everyone is empowered to participate, our communities are stronger.

1. Volunteer

    Volunteers welcome dogs into their homes; they act as program ambassadors; they provide administrative support to many departments, and support the mission in myriad ways. If you want to give your time, there's no shortage of ways to help. Explore GDB's many volunteer options, decide what interests you most, and then get in touch.

    2. Brush up on guide dog etiquette.

    While you should never treat a person who is blind or visually impaired differently, there are some considerations to remember when you meet a guide dog team. Watch our brief, animated explainer video to learn more. 

    3. Follow GDB on our social media channels.

    GDB is active on several social media platforms. Following us and liking, commenting, or sharing our posts help us reach more people when we share about upcoming events, programs, and alerts. You can follow us on Facebook, InstagramYouTube, LinkedIn, and TikTok.

    4. Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter, Tales Unleashed.

    5. Tune in to our podcast, Central Bark, to meet members of the GDB community and hear the stories that bring our mission to life.

    6. Watch Pick of the Litter

    GDB was the subject of an award-winning feature-length documentary called Pick of the Litter that is now streaming. This is a family-friendly (and adorable!) way to introduce kids and family members to Guide Dogs for the Blind.

    7. Learn more about raising a puppy for GDB.

    Volunteer puppy raisers receive a pup when they are approximately 8 weeks old, teach them good manners, and provide socialization experiences for about the first year and a half of the pups' lives. The pup is returned to one of our two campuses for formal guidework training when they are 15 months of age or older. Guide Dogs for the Blind will support you throughout the entire process, step by step, to help you reach the important milestones. Find a Puppy Club near you today. 

    8. Donate to GDB.

    Your donation enables us to raise puppies, equip clients, and serve alumni. All of our programs and services are provided free of charge and we are funded entirely through private donations and gifts. Make a gift today. 

    9. Learn more about GDB’s 80-year legacy.

    GDB was founded in 1942 to serve veterans who lost their sight in WW2. 80 years later, we are the largest guide dog school in North America, serving more than 2,200 clients in the US and Canada. Learn more about our history and our founders. 

    10. Place an order from our online store.

    The online gift shop stocks GDB-approved dog gear and supplies as well as clothing and gifts that you can only find on our site. All gift shop purchases support our life-changing mission. 

    11. Tell a friend about us.

    If you know someone who would benefit from our programs and services, you can refer them to today to learn more. Our site is accessible and easy to navigate, but if they need more support, they can reach our Support Center at 800.295.4050.

    12. Join our team.

    GDB is hiring for a variety of positions. Check out our current job listings and share them with someone that you know who may be looking for a career with a purpose. We are currently hiring for positions in California, Oregon, and fully remote opportunities.

    13. Invite GDB to share more about our mission with your staff, school, or service organization.

    We love to share our mission and we'd love to tell you more about how we can work together to create more inclusive communities. Email [email protected] to learn more. 

    14. Sign up to receive video calls through Be My Eyes

    GDB has partnered with our friends at Be My Eyes to provide specialized support to guide dog users who need assistance troubleshooting or addressing any issues that come up. You can sign up today to get your first call and support someone who is blind or visually impaired. 

    15. Schedule a tour of one of our campuses.

    Tours on both campuses are walking tours that last approximately 1.25 hours and include indoor and outdoor locations. Reservations are required at least one week in advance of your tour date;  book your tour today! 

    16. Take a virtual tour of our campuses.

    See our life-changing mission in action! You can take a virtual tour of both of our campuses from the comfort of your own home. 

    17. Help ensure guide dog teams have access to public spaces.

    Guide dog handlers have a legal right to access all public spaces,  including public transit and ride shares. You can help advocate for inclusion at your workplace, school, and local businesses that you frequent. 

    18. Make a preparedness plan for your service dog or pets. The world-class Veterinary staff at Guide Dogs for the Blind have compiled a list of steps that you can take to ensure that four-legged family members are included in your emergency preparedness plans.  Review our Dog Safety Tips today!

    19. Become a member of our Legacy Society.

    Legacy Society members make a lasting impact on our organization through their bequests and charitable rollovers. 

    20. Take a virtual tour of our Puppy Center.

    If you're in need of some puppy love, take a virtual tour of our state-of-the-art Puppy Center today

    21. Check out our blog, No Bones About It

    22. Familiarize yourself with the Americans with Disabilities Act and any guide dog-specific legislation in your state or jurisdiction. 

    23. Learn more about and thank our Corporate Partners for their support

    24. Attend or host a fundraising event

    25. Make a monthly gift to GDB.

    $25 a month helps provide a food bowl and fleece pad for a guide dog each month. 

    26. Learn more about the lived experiences of our clients. 

    Hear directly from our clients about the impact of GDB's programs and the lifetime of support that they receive. Watch our client videos on YouTube.

    27. Watch and share our short explainer video about GDB.

    28. Learn about our Fear Free Veterinary Care practices and our Veterinary Financial Assistance Program

    29. Attend a graduation in person or tune in to the live streams on Saturdays at 1:30 p.m.! 

    30. Volunteer (yes, we know we’ve already said this, but there are so many ways to volunteer that it deserves another spot on the list!)

    Happy National Guide Dog Month and happy celebrating!

      Categories: GDB Community, GDB Volunteers, Just for Fun