To see more photos from the Guide Dogs of Texas, click here.
There are only 12 guide dog schools in the country and only one in Texas, Guide Dogs of Texas.
It’s located in San Antonio our mission is to service Texans with vision impairment and make sure we can help give them their independence back, CEO of Guide Dogs of Texas, John Douglas said.
“We do things in really kind of a unique way that no other program does,” Douglas said. “Our program is very customized to the needs of our clients.”
Before a dog is paired up with anyone we visit them in their home and really get an understanding of their own specific needs, sometimes spending a whole day with them, he said.
“We hand select each dog based on personality and temperament,” Douglas said. “We understand it’s a partnership, one that relies on trust and we make sure both the client and the dog is well trained for each other.”
Anyone over the age 18 and is living in Texas with a vision impairment needing a guide dog is welcome to have one Douglas said. Currently they’re in such demand there is a two-year waitlist. To make them attainable by ‘all’ the school only asks for a $1 donation, nothing more.
“We feel that every Texan should have an equal opportunity to get a guide dog no matter their economic situations,” he explained. “If they're wealthy it's a dollar, it they're poor it's a dollar.”
The need for volunteers, we just want to educate as many as we can on the significance guide dogs make, Douglas said. No government money or insurance money is given to the company, putting even more importance on donations.
“By the time we place a dog with the client we have about 40 to 50 thousand dogs invested each dog, that is based on time, training and other things,” Douglas said. “And all is made possible from individual donations, corporate donations and gifts from foundations.”
To find out more information on how you can donate to the Guide Dogs of Texas or to become a volunteer log on to their website.
And the next you go to PetCo for your pets, find out how you can help ‘Helping Heroes’ and other pet organizations just by buying certain pet food click here.