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22nd Feb 2022

Irish Guide Dogs is looking for volunteers to raise puppies

Temporary homes for some very cute puppies are needed.

Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind are on the hunt for some caring individuals to become puppy-raising volunteers.

Let’s be honest, everyone loves dogs, and by volunteering you can also help people with a vision impairment or families of a child with autism enjoy the same freedom and independence as the rest of us.

Puppy Raising Manager, Erin McDonald, said the charity is seeking people in the Leinster and Munster area to raise a dog temporarily from the age of eight weeks until around 13 months.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, she explained that a puppy will live with a volunteer in their home, where it will learn basic rules and obedience – under the direction of Puppy Raising Supervisors.

She said that every volunteer is assigned a puppy supervisor to help them with the training, which is completed through a mix of zoom and face-to-face lessons.

The puppies need to live indoors and would have to be “treated a little bit differently” to regular pets.

“They shouldn’t be up on furniture or beds, couches or be fed table scraps. So, the obedience would be a little bit stricter than we would get away with sometimes with a pet dog.”

Labrador and labrador-golden retriever crosses are the typical breeds that are used.

Retired people and families with children generally make good puppy raisers, but applications are open to all types of dog-lovers.

To become a volunteer, one must be over the age 18 and have a secure garden. There should also be no more than two other dogs in the household and any children residing there should be over the age of five.

It’s also important that the puppy must not be left alone for more than four hours.

More information can be found here.