Texas

San Antonio’s non-profit train provides guide dogs to the visually impaired Texans

San Antonio – Since 1989, Guide Dogs of Texas, a non-profit guide dog provider, has been working to train and provide guide dogs to visually impaired Texas people.

This group professionally breeds, breeds, trains, and matches guide dogs to owners throughout the state. It is a service that brings friendship, freedom and mobility to those who need the assistance of guide dogs.

Judy St. Clair has been legally blind since 1993, and she said that only her ability to travel independently with a guide dog had a positive impact on her life.

“We trust each other and that’s a factor of trust. With a wand, you basically need to know where you’re going, but it’s great because you can still get injured. The dog will see something in advance and protect you, “said St. Clair.

According to the Guide Dogs of Texas, puppies are placed with volunteer puppy breeders up to the age of 14-16 months. The group in San Antonio said it managed to take care of future guide dog numbers, even in the event of a pandemic, and needed a “puppy breeder” to support the program.

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Patty McCauley is a puppy breeder who has been living with his dog “nugget” since he was eight weeks old. She said she played with the idea of ​​volunteering for a while, then decided how much her service would help those in need.

“I just raise a puppy, give it love, take it out and introduce it to people, the environment, and what the average person encounters every day, and know that you are giving back to someone. I think it’s kind of great to know that you can help someone on your own, “McColly said.

According to the group, “No prior experience is required and all training is provided.”

“Puppies are responsible for teaching puppies etiquette and providing a social experience for the first year of life,” said a non-profit organization.

Puppies also attend monthly meetings to share ideas and information, work on training techniques, and participate in social gatherings.

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Amy Samora, a guide dog instructor, said dogs do more than just increase mobility and independence.

“Dog brings a lot of happy faces, and it really encourages people to go to our clients to get involved with them, and it also brings this whole beautiful social relationship.” Said Samora.

Guide dogs are obedient and friendly, but the instructor said it was important not to stroke the guide dog. The owner of a guide dog, St. Clair, says he will not allow the dog while wearing the harness.

“If I let someone touch her with the harness on, she would want to go too far and play. It would be distracting, and the overall idea of ​​working a guide dog would be a distraction. But they will continue to focus, “said St. Clair.

Guide dogs in Texas charge only $ 1 per specially trained dog, but the cost of raising and training guide dogs can be as high as $ 50,000.

For more information or to sign up for the program, please visit www.guidedogsoftexas.org, call 210-366-4081 or email outreach @ guidedogsoftexas.org.

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San Antonio’s non-profit train provides guide dogs to the visually impaired Texans

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