Applying to the Guide Dog Foundation

Making the decision to work with a guide dog is a transformational event that extends into every aspect of the handler's life. As students work through our application process, they will provide us with the key information that will help find the right dog and training program for them.  With a clear understanding of their goals and objectives, we’ll craft a program that will relate their specific needs.  Applicants may discontinue the application process at any time, for any reason.  Our applicants and program graduates are never required to fundraise or engage in public relations or marketing initiatives on our behalf.

Ways to Apply

  • Complete our online application

  • Print a copy of the application and mail or fax it back to us.

  • Call us and a member of our team will walk an applicant through the online application while filling it out on their behalf. (631-930-9070)

  • Request a braille version of the application.  Once the applicant is ready, our staff will assist them in filling it out online.

With either choice a student makes, a member of our team is available to assist them with each phase of the application process.

Next Steps

A Foundation field service representative will follow up with each applicant within five days after the application is processed.  During this initial call, the field representative will set up time with the applicant to conduct a phone or in-person interview, review the application with the potential student, and obtain additional information about their routes and daily activities. The field representative can also provide guidance on the creation of an application video .  

Additional Required Information

  • Medical report completed by a primary health care physician

  • Ophthalmologist's report 

  • Orientation and mobility professional's report (If the student has received orientation & mobility training.)

  • Mental Health Report (Required if an applicant currently is seen by a mental health professional.)

Once an applicant is accepted to the guide dog training program, there is an average wait of nine to eighteen months before they will be invited to attend a class.  During this time, we are finding the right match, and training it to meet the students specific needs. 

  • Students can find our guide dog training lectures online. These and other helpful resources are available here .

Guide Dog Training

Join us at our campus in Smithtown, NY for our two-week in-residence training program.  

Start the Application Process

Click the Apply Now link below to start the application process.