Guide Dog Foundation

Our Programs


Why raise a guide dog puppy? Why welcome a puppy into your family for only one year?

Because the rewards are endless!

There is tremendous satisfaction in being a Puppy Raiser and helping an adorable pup become a guide dog for a person who is blind. You’ll receive love and affection from the dog, plus endless pride and satisfaction from the volunteer experience.

Don’t just take our word for it – here’s what some of our dedicated volunteers have to say:

“I decided to raise a guide dog puppy as a way to do a good thing for somebody while providing my own pet shepherd with a companion. Time is always easier to find in my budget than spare money! The thing I enjoy most about being a Puppy Walker is spending time with all the great puppies (and people, too) involved in the program. “Although it is most difficult to return a puppy, there is always another one waiting for its opportunity to show what its special talents are. My reward is knowing that if I do the best job I can with the puppy I am raising, it will have a better chance to make somebody a very special guide dog.”
-- Robin B., Ronkonkoma, New York


“What we enjoy most: Taking Sweetheart out. Everyone’s reactions are so nice. She’s a lot of fun to have around. What are the rewards? Well, it’s nice to give something to someone else. Our puppies give us a lot of joy and laughs. It would be extra special to have one make it as a guide dog.”
-- The Wilson Family, Long Island, New York

“It’s so very easy and impersonal to take out a checkbook, write a check and walk away. It’s a whole different thing to give some of your time every day -- rain, snow or sun -- to raising a puppy, and then, just when things are starting to get easy, give him back. But it’s such a wonderful feeling to see a visually impaired person take that dog and simply cross the street safely. It makes getting up in the middle of the night worth it. From time to time, I hear about how a guide dog saved someone from being injured or worse. It may take a year or so to raise and train a guide dog, but just try to imagine the newfound freedom that awaits his new owner!”
-- Philip Z., Nesconset, New York

“We have had Ozzi for a couple of months now, and love him to pieces. We decided to become Puppy Walkers because of the need for volunteers and our love of dogs. We all grew up with dogs and believe there is no greater pet. We have the companionship of a beautiful dog, knowing that we will not lose him to illness, or death. He will hopefully be a great asset to someone one day. Knowing that we could be a small part in helping that happen is so satisfying.

“The rewards are endless for doing this. The love and affection we receive from Ozzi is never ending. He is so devoted, and eager to please. It’s so wonderful to give a command, and to see our efforts pay off. The more we give, the more we get with our effort. “We enjoy every aspect of being a Puppy Walker, mainly the love we receive from Ozzi makes it all worth while. It makes us proud to be out in public and have people comment on how well behaved Ozzi is. I enjoy our down time, when we can just curl up and relax on the floor, reading, or watching the news. Yes, Ozzi watches the news, but prefers the Animal Planet!”

-- D’Arcy Family, Lake Ronkonkoma, New York