January 30, 2023

Know Something About Guide Dogs

Know Something About Guide DogsGuide dogs are assistance dogs trained to lead blind and visually impaired people around obstacles. No matter what, guide dogs really help the disabled a lot in the aspect of life. Although the dogs can be trained to navigate various obstacles, they are partially (red–green) color blind and are not capable of interpreting street signs. The human half of the guide dog team does the directing, based upon skills acquired through previous mobility training. The handler might be likened to an aircraft’s navigator, who must know how to get from one place to another, and the dog is the pilot, who gets them there safely.
In several countries, guide dogs, along with most service and hearing dogs, are exempt from regulations against the presence of animals in places such as restaurants and public transportation.
While there has been a long history of dogs assisting people who are blind, it was not until after World War I that a formal dog guide program was developed. A school in Pottsdam Germany trained German shepherds as guides for blinded veterans of the war, but did not stay in existence for very long. However, an American woman living in Switzerland learned of the program and ultimately advanced the modern dog guide movement in the United States. Her name was Dorothy Harrison Eustis and she was a wealthy Philadelphian experimenting with the training of German shepherds as working dogs. When she visited the Pottsdam school, she thought the concept of a dog guide was a noble profession for which to train her own dogs. But it was not until after she wrote an article about the Pottsdam school which appeared in the November 5th, 1927 edition of The Saturday Evening Post that she had any cause to incorporate dog guide training for her dogs.
Morris frank, a young blind man living in Nashville, Tennessee heard the article and wrote to Ms. Eustis asking her to train a dog for him. Morris Frank had lost the use of his eyes in two separate accidents and did not like depending on others. He asked Ms. Eustis to train a dog for him and, in return, he would teach others who were blind so that they, too, could become independent. Ms. Eustis replied that if he could come to Switzerland for the training, she would accommodate his request. Morris Frank became the first American to use a dog guide and Buddy, a female German shepherd, became the pioneer dog guide in America.
Morris Frank returned home to Nashville and honored his promise: with $10,000 from Ms. Eustis, Morris Frank worked to establish the first dog guide school in America. Incorporated on January 29, 1929, it was called The Seeing Eye, after the article Ms. Eustis wrote. The title came from Proverbs 20:12 in the Bible, “The seeing eye, the hearing ear; The Lord hath made them both.” The first class had two students and by the end of the first year 17 people experienced new-found freedom with Seeing Eye dogs by their sides. By 1931, it became evident that the Nashville weather was not conducive to year-round training and the school relocated to New Jersey.
Early on, trainers began to recognize which breeds produced dogs most appropriate for guide work; today, Golden Retrievers, Labradors, and German Shepherds are most likely to be chosen by guide dog facilities, although other breeds, such as Standard Poodles, Collies, Border Collies, Australian Shepherds, Staffordshire Terriers, Vizslas, Dobermans, Rottweilers, American Pit Bull Terriers, Boxers, and Airedale Terriers, may also be selected. Guide dog breeds are chosen in relation to height at the shoulder measured against harness length and an individual’s height.
Crosses such as Golden Retriever/Labrador (which are popular due to both breeds’ known intelligence, work ethic, and early maturation)[citation needed] and Labradoodles (Labrador/Poodles bred to provide dogs with less shedding for those with allergies to hair or dander) are also common.

Know Something About Guide Dogs
The most popular breed used globally today is the Labrador Retriever. This breed has a good range of size, is easily kept due to its short coat, is generally healthy and has a gentle but willing temperament.
However,because some schools of thought in Islam consider dogs in general to be unclean,many Muslim taxi drivers and store owners have refused to accommodate customers who have guide dogs, which has led to discrimination charges against them. However, in 2003 the Sharia Council, a non-legal advocacy group based in the United Kingdom, ruled that the ban on dogs does not apply to those used for guide work.
Studies show owning a pet or therapy animal offer positive effects psychologically, socially, and physiologically. Guide dogs especially come with a variety of benefits and help in many ways. They give a blind person more confidence, friendship, and security.Blind people who use guide dogs have increased confidence in going about day-to-day life and are comforted by a constant friend.Companionship offered by a pet helps reduce anxiety, depression, and loneliness. Because dogs offer support, security, and companionship, stress is reduced, which in turn improves cardiovascular health. “A number of studies identify pet ownership as a factor in improved recovery from illness and in improved health in general”. Guide dogs make it easier to get around, resulting in the person getting more exercise or walking more.People are more willing to go places and feel a sense of independence. Meeting people and socializing is easier, and people are more likely to offer a blind person help when there is a guide dog.The dogs lead to increased interaction with other people. Dogs are seen as “ice breakers” to a conversation and something to talk about.In many cases, guide dogs offer a life changing experience. They are more advantageous than long canes when one is in an unfamiliar place. The dog directs the right path, instead of poking around wondering if you might bump into something. Guide dogs make the experience of the unknown more relaxing.Getting from point A to point B using a guide dog is much faster and safer.Owners of guide dogs share a special bond with their dog. Many report that the dog is a member of the family, and go to their dog for comfort and support. The dog isn’t seen as a working dog, but more as a loyal friend.