Last Updated on October 14, 2023 by Dogs Vets
Guide Dogs: Mankind’s Faithful Companions
We sometimes meet a special working dog breed – a guide dog. They lead the visually impaired on the streets, helping them avoid obstacles and safely reach their destinations.
However, most people may know very little about these loyal friends, especially how they are trained and how they establish deep relationships with their owners. Through this article, we hope to unveil the mystery of guide dogs for you.
Definition and Function of Guide Dogs
Guide dogs are working dogs trained to help visually impaired people safely carry out daily activities. Whether going to school, shops, or laundries, guide dogs accurately lead their owners and avoid potential hazards. If you see a dog with a special harness, remember it’s on duty and shouldn’t be disturbed.
Breeds Suitable as Guide Dogs
While many dog breeds can become guide dogs, Labradors, Golden Retrievers, German Shepherds, and some Poodles are common choices.
Labradors and Golden Retrievers are preferred because of their medium size, gentle nature, and calm reaction to stimuli. When choosing a guide dog, ensuring they have no history of aggression or hereditary diseases is important.
Training Process of Guide Dogs
The training of guide dogs begins when they are puppies. First, they are placed with foster families to learn basic social behaviors, like where to do their business and how to behave in public places.
Later, they undergo specialized guide dog training, learning to navigate obstacles and handle unexpected situations. The whole training lasts around 18 months and can be costly.
Relationship Between Guide Dogs and Their Owners
The longer guide dogs live with their owners, the more they understand their habits.
They remember frequent destinations and sense the owner’s needs and feelings, becoming true life companions. When off-duty, guide dogs seek play and affection like any other pet.
How to Care for Guide Dogs
Guide dogs act as the “eyes” for the visually impaired. To ensure their best performance, they need proper care and attention. When wearing their special harness, they focus on their tasks. Once it’s off, they need play and love like any other pet. Owners should:
Health: Regularly check the dog’s health, ensuring no diseases.
Diet: Offer a balanced diet with fiber-rich foods like vegetables.
Cleanliness: Brush their fur daily, bathe them regularly, and clean their living space.
Recognition: To help others identify a working guide dog, you can personalize a dog shirt using custom iron on transfers, showcasing their image. This simple gesture, achieved through custom DTF transfers, not only prevents disturbances but also raises awareness and respect for guide dogs.
You can also personalize dog stickers of the guide dogs and place them on your phone case, further enhancing public recognition of guide dogs and promoting social interaction for the visually impaired.
Guide dogs are not just working dogs but crucial friends and navigators for the visually impaired. As a common person, we should also increase our understanding and respect for guide dogs, creating a more friendly and understanding environment for the visually impaired.