I am 15 and a puppy raiser for Guide Dogs of the Desert. When I got my first puppy in February of 2010 I was very insecure because I am a young puppy raiser so I felt that I was not as cable of raising a guide dog. I also saw these other dogs performing so well and my puppy not doing as well a lot but the staff quickly helped me to learn how to handle the dog better and understand that puppies all develop differently and some take longer to learn things. I also saw other dogs have bad days at training class and realized that my dog was at the same level as most of the dogs there. She is now almost ready to go back and I just got a second puppy. The staff at Guide Dogs of the desert is amazing and really showed me that I can do anything I put my mind to even if I am young. In addition, the other puppy raisers have made me feel right at home at all of the events and training classes and are all great people.
Review from CharityNavigator
We volunteered as puppy raisers and breeder hosts for two dogs over a period of approximately 2 years in 2006-2008. Guide Dogs of the Desert had a major management change during that period resulting in the dismissal of almost all of the existing staff, who were positive, friendly, helpful, open and welcoming people. As existing volunteers with questions and concerns, we were eventually dismissed via an e-mail message. Our breeder dog was taken from us without any discussion or valid explanation. We had volunteered many hours and donated a significant amount of money. We had grown to love our breeder dog very much. She is a fantastic dog and was a big part of our family. We know we are not the only ones who were treated this way. It's unfortunate that the management of the school could not continue with all the volunteers they had in place. They get a zero for communication skills and compassionate understanding of what exactly their volunteers do for them and their dogs. We now volunteer as breeder hosts, and donate to, another guide dog school in Los Angeles, and we are very proud to be helping them with our special brand of volunteerism.