Guidedogs is asking for puppy raiser volunteers in the Liverpool area.

Breeding, raising, and training dogs can take up to two years, and the impact of the pandemic is still being felt.

The breeding and training had to be suspended for five months to ensure the safety of their volunteers and staff.

This means the average waiting time to match a guide dog with a service user is 16.3 months.

Andrea Deller, Puppy Development Advisor, said, “Puppies are placed with volunteers at eight weeks old to begin house training, teaching them to be nice to visitors and happy on their own.

All the social skills you want from a pet dog and there will also be lots of training out and about.

We want the dogs to be nice, confident, and relaxed in lots of different situations, using public transport, using a lead, and coming back when they are called.”

Andrea said, “If we don’t get sufficient volunteers to raise our puppies, then we can’t bring them in at the standard we need them to be.

Ultimately, this impacts the number of dogs we have available to match with our service users.

We need puppy dog raisers because, without them, guide dogs wouldn’t exist.”

By the end of January, 38 per cent of those who had been matched in the last 12 months had been waiting for less than a year.

71 per cent of the people who have been matched in the last 12 months have been waiting for less than two years.

Guidedogs stated that they are determined to support more people who are blind or visually impaired and are focused on creating more successful partnerships as the impact of Covid reduces over the next few years.




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