“This is, by far, the most rewarding volunteer work I could ever imagine doing.”
Linda and Yoshi (Foster Parent )
Recently members of the Ancaster Lions Club took a tour of the Lions Foundation of Canada, Dog Guides training center.
Jenny Gladish, Communications Manager, of the organization, and her foster dog Yale, escorted us through a wonderful facility where the foundation’s client’s lives are made better through caring and attention to detail. There are over 26 socializing and residence areas for trainers and clients to work together with the dogs to create a successful partnership.
It’s always good to help someone…no better feeling
MaryLou (Foster Parent )
The dog guide program was first launched in 1983 with the first graduates completing training in 1985. There have since been approximately 2,400 grads with larger classes being added every year.
The staff of the foundation work tirelessly to ensure the best training and care of the dogs and, in turn, a good match and lifelong partnership for their clients. Working with no government assistance the program is financed only by donations from service clubs, corporations, foundations and generous individuals.
Dog guides are trained for six different type of special needs recipients;
Canine Vision Dog Guides, for people who are visually impaired
Hearing Ear Dog Guides, for people who are deaf or heard of hearing
Special Skills Dog Guides, for people with a physical disability
Seizure Response Dog Guides, for people who have epilepsy
Autism Assistance Dog Guides, for children with autism spectrum disorder
Diabetic Alert Dog Guides, for people who have type 1 diabetes with hypoglycemic unawareness
Simple, I love dogs!
Martin (Foster Parent )
Fostering is another aspect to the dog guide journey. Volunteers can foster eight week old trainees. The foster family would house-train and go to school with their charges. Puppy classes are held every 4-6 weeks at either the Foundation’s Oakville or Breslau locations. Part of the fostering process is to socialize the puppy in various locations such as a mall, grocery store or your neighbourhood. Food and veterinary care are all covered thanks to the generous donation from Nestle and the in-house Lions Foundation veterinary team.
Ancaster Lions Club has been a long time supporter of Dog Guides Canada. You can support the organization either through us, or directly at http://www.dogguides.com/donate.html
If you would like to become a foster parent to a dog go to http://www.dogguides.com/foster.html for more information.
For general information or to volunteer with Dog Guides Canada go to http://www.dogguides.com/index.html