, non-profit guide dog school headquartered in Yorktown Heights, will host an open house this Sunday, May 1 to showcase its guide dogs in training.
Staff members and volunteers will explain to visitors what it’s like to be a Guiding Eyes puppy raiser, dog lovers could cuddle with the guide dogs in training, and hear from a Guiding Eyes graduate about life with a guide dog.
Puppy raisers are volunteers who take eight-week-old puppies into their homes to love, nurture, and educate for a 12 to 16-month period before sending them off to their "calling" as a guidedog for a blind or visually impaired person, according to officials. For someone without sight, a Guiding Eyes dog provides life changing independence, as well as unconditional love and support.
The Guiding Eyes Puppy Raising Program is comprised of more than 400 volunteers from Maine to North Carolina. Puppy raisers include couples, families with children, young adults, and senior citizens. Some already have pets of their own, while others commit to raising guide dogs as a way to give their love to a new pet each year.
The Guiding Eyes' free open house will start at 4 p.m. and run until 6 p.m. The headquarters are located at 611 Granite Springs Rd. in Yorktown.
Guiding Eyes for the Blind was founded in 1954 to provide visually impaired individuals the freedom to travel safely, thereby assuring greater independence. Since that time, Guiding Eyes has graduated more than 7,000 guide dog teams. It also provides professional training and follow-up support services to students at no cost to them and depends on contributions to fulfill its mission. The comprehensive cost of breeding, raising, preparing, training, and supporting a Guiding Eyes team is $45,000.
For additional information on the Puppy Raising Program call 1-866-GEB-LABS or click here.