Long-term foster homes needed for guide dogs breeding program

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Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is seeking long-term foster homes for female dogs in its breeding program. 

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind breeds golden retrievers and Labrador retrievers.  At this time, they are currently seeking long-term foster homes for female breeding dogs, which are fully trained adult dogs, specifically selected from the guide dog program for breeding purposes, to produce future guide dogs.

 

Suitable candidates should be home most of the day, have a secure yard, and access to transportation.  This is a long-term commitment of up to eight years, in which you home a dog from the breeding program.  Ownership of the dog is retained by Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.  Food and veterinary expenses are provided.  For this position, you must live within a one-hour drive of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind’s National Training Centre in Manotick, Ontario.

This commitment of up to eight years is like having a pet dog, with all food and veterinary expenses provided.  However, there is one special element to the position.  Occasionally, the dog you are fostering would be used for breeding purposes and the litter of pups is born in your home, starting an eight weeks of whelping the litter; the process when a female dog gives birth.  Experience in whelping litters of puppies is an asset, but not necessary.

When the dog gives birth, you need to be home the majority of the time throughout the eight week commitment for whelping.  In the first three weeks, you need to be there to supervise the pups for feedings every few hours.  You have to keep the whelping box clean and wash the blankets, plus make sure their mom is doing well post-whelping, and monitor the pups’ weight twice a day to ensure that each pup is gaining weight.  As the pups get older, they are gradually introduced to watered-down kibble.  As they are weaned, they start to socialize with people and each other more and begin to go outside.  The older they get, the more intense the work gets, as they need a lot more stimulation.  You work on housetraining with them, and their naps become shorter as they get older.  It is at that point that you start to see their little personalities develop.

A professional staff member from CGDB is present throughout the whelping of the pups to ensure that things go as smoothly as possible.  Following the birth, they visit your home on a weekly basis to assess the pups and their mom; to offer advice; and to answer any questions or concerns.  If you have any issues between visits, you can call CGDB to have them addressed and someone can be reached 24 hours a day if needed for emergencies.  When the pups are eight weeks old, they are removed from the volunteer’s home and enter into the guide dog training program.  The breeding dog remains living in your home.

 

For additional information or to complete an application, contact Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind at (613) 692-7777 or email info@guidedogs.ca.

 

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind was established as a registered charity in 1984.  Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind has provided more than 760 professionally trained guide dogs to Canadians who are visually impaired from coast to coast. Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind also operates an Assistance Dogs Division, which trains assistance dogs for individuals in the local area with mobility-related disabilities.

To learn more about the organization, visit www.guidedogs.ca or phone (613) 692-7777.

 


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