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February 10, 2010 > Dog graduates as Guide Dog

Dog graduates as Guide Dog

Submitted By Guide Dogs for the Blind
Photos By courtesy of Guide Dogs for the Blind

Local residents Randy and Chris Hollenshead contributed time and love in raising a puppy for Guide Dogs for the Blind and were proud to see the dog graduate as a guide in a formal ceremony at the Guide Dog campus in San Rafael, on January 23.

Shown in the attached photo are the puppy raisers, Randy and Chris Hollenshead, who presented Guide Dog "Friday," a yellow Labrador breed, to graduating student Gerald Richmond.

Puppy raisers, Randy and Chris are members of the local Guide Dog Puppy Raising Club, 'Bay Area Guide Dog Puppy Raisers,' led by Randy Hollenshead. The club has 10 members who volunteer in a variety of jobs.

Guide Dogs for the Blind uses yellow and black Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers and Lab/Golden Crosses as guides. The puppies are born at the Guide Dog kennels and placed in the homes of volunteer puppy raisers when they are about two months old. Puppy raisers socialize the pups by housebreaking them, teaching them to be good canine citizens and introducing them to new experiences.

The pups are returned to Guide Dogs for formal guidework training when they are 14 to 18 months old. Following the completion of training, the dogs are matched with blind students enrolled at the school. The new person-dog team completes an intensive in-residence course culminating with a graduation ceremony at which the raiser formally presents the dog to the dog's new partner who is blind.

Guide Dogs for the Blind has been creating life-long partnerships in the community by providing skilled dogs and training in their use, free of charge since 1942. They receive no government funding but depend entirely on private donations. If you know someone who could benefit from a Guide Dog, please let him/her know about this program.

Guide Dogs for the Blind
(800) 295-4050

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