October 10, 2012
We are volunteer puppy raiser for Southeastern Guidedogs. We get the puppies at 9 weeks and keep them for about 1 year. In that year we take the puppies with us EVERYWHERE we go, from the grocery store, restaurants to going to the dentist. Anywhere a blind person might go... When a blind person gets matched with a dog, it is life-changing. It gives the blind person the freedom to go places on their own and have independence and dignity. One of our friends told us after she received her Guide dog that she was able to use a public restroom on her own for the first time since she had lost her sight. She told us that it gave her dignity back. How do you put a price on that? Our first dog had an injury and didn't make it to be a Guide dog but she was trained to be a Bomb/Arson dog instead. She 'reports' to the fire station in Orlando Florida, protecting people like you and me. Our 2nd dog we raised was chosen to be a Veteran Service dog for someone that served our country and returns from the war front suffering from PTSD. She will be a life-saving gift for someone who suffered this 'hidden wound' fighting for our freedoms. We are about half-way into raising our third dog. People often ask us how we give can give up a dog we have bonded with for the past year. And we answer; how can we not? It is a gift that we give to someone whose needs are more important than our wants. This would not be possible without Southeastern Guide dogs. We are grateful for what they do and are proud to part of that mission to assist others. And these gifts are always free to the recipient, thanks to generous individuals who share our passion to help others.
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