Friday, May 30, 2014

Newshounds: Guide Dogs for the Blind in the News!

Real Simple Feature: The Intrepid (Mommies with Guides)  –

The BARk magazine: Guide Dogs for the Blind's Training Methods –

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences/The Oscars Video "There's Not Much To See: How Blind People Enjoy Movies" Featuring GDB Graduate Melissa Hudson –!/photo.php?v=10152174401071406&fref=nf

Bay Area Guide Dog Puppy Raisers Club: Information Video –

GDB graduate and U.S. Paralympic Skier Danelle Umstead –

GDB Guide Dog Puppy Leanne AT&T Commercial –

Guide Dog Glendale Wins Purple Paw Award –

Past GDB graduate Kristina Blum on the Katie Couric Show (first legally blind contestant with the genetic condition albinism to compete in the Miss California USA Pageant and ended up winning the Miss Congeniality Award) –

GDB Career Change Dog is Now a Certified Hearing Dog Helping Cedar Point Woman Find Freedom –

Saying Goodbye to Tiki: Eighth Grader Max Angel Raises His First Guide Dog Puppy –

Residents in Portland Metro Area and Surrounding Regions Benefit from New Partnership –

GDB graduate Nancy Stevens featured in Ruffwear’s Video “My Dog is My” –

Five Houston Area Families Train Future Guide Dogs –

GDB Career Change Dog Pauletta is Now a Therapy Dog –

Silicon Valley Bank and Guide Dogs for the Blind Team Up –

GDB graduate Nancy Shugart’s TED Talk “Be the One to make it Happen” –

GDB Career Change Dog Pesto Now a Therapy Dog Who Helped Change the Lives of Two Brothers –

South County Safari Featuring the O.C. Coastal Puppy Raisers –

GDB’s Collaboration with DoveLewis: Portland Area Canine Therapy Teams (PACTT) –

GDB graduate Wayne Heidle Gives Inspiring Lecture with Guide Dog Poncho  –

GDB Program Dog Teton is a Newly Trained Therapy Dog Working with Veterans –

Volunteers Play Critical Role in Helping Train Service Dogs –


Friday, May 23, 2014

Puparazzi Calendar Photo Contest!

Yellow Lab guide dog puppy wearing the green puppy vest with trees in the background

Guide Dogs for the Blind invites you to enter our Puparazzi Calendar Photo Contest! This is not your typical photography contest! We’re excited to be partnering with VotDo to offer an online, interactive voting platform that not only lets you be actively involved in your photo submission’s chance of winning a spot in GDB’s 2015 calendar, but helps raise funds for GDB’s mission as well.

Here’s how it works:
• There are five different categories for photo submissions:
1. Guide Dog Puppies (guide dog puppies wearing their current GDB puppy coats)
2. Working Guide Dogs (GDB guide dogs in harness)
3. GDB Breeder Dogs (ideally wearing their GDB breeder scarves)
4. GDB Career Change Dogs
5. Pet Pooches (any pet dogs of any breed – just great dog photos!)

• You can submit one digital photo to the contest according to the contest rules below. Our website will be open for submissions between Friday, May 23 through Thursday, June 5.
• Once your submission is approved, it will appear in an online voting gallery.
• Voting by donation begins on Friday, June 6 and closes on Friday, June 20. It costs $1 to vote, and there’s no limit on how many times people can vote. The voting proceeds are all tax-deductible donations to Guide Dogs for the Blind. All votes must be paid for online via the contest’s secure checkout system; you will receive a tax receipt by email when your transaction is complete.
• Once voting is live, you’ll want to spread the word about the contest to friends, family, coworkers and anyone you can think of and ask them to support your entry by voting for your dog’s picture. We will make it easy for you to get the word out, so when the contest begins you will able to link your entry in the voting gallery directly to your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, email accounts and more. It’s up to you to spread the word, encourage people to vote by donation, and make sure your photo wins its category - all while supporting Guide Dogs for the Blind.
• The top vote getters (fundraising participants) in categories 1-4 will be featured in GDB’s 2015 wall calendar. The top vote getters in all categories will receive ten copies of the 2015 GDB calendar.
Contest Rules
• The Puparazzi Calendar Photo Contest is limited to one digital photo submission per person. Be sure to pick your best shot! Limiting the entries to one per person is to your advantage; multiple entries would divide your votes and make it harder for you to win.
• For the categories "Guide Dog Puppies" and "Working Guide Dogs," the dogs should be well branded in the photo (wearing current GDB puppy coats or harnesses). Photo captions must accompany all submissions, and include the name(s) of the dog(s) and any people in the image, and a brief description of the photo. DESCRIPTIVE CAPTIONING IS VERY IMPORTANT IN ORDER TO KEEP THE CONTEST AS ACCESSIBLE AS POSSIBLE. Example of a descriptive photo caption: Yellow Lab guide dog puppy Buffy posing in front of a field of colorful wildflowers.
• Contest participants are responsible for ensuring that they have the right to submit the photos being entered in the contest. By submitting to the contest, you affirm that you are the photographer or have been given unrestricted use permission by the photographer, to include the photo. If you choose to include people in your photo submission, you are responsible for obtaining the necessary permissions from the individuals depicted.
• All photographs should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared (no collages, please). Photos that have been digitally altered beyond standard optimization (removal of dust, reasonable adjustments to exposure, color and contrast, etc.) will not be considered for the contest. Multiple exposures that have been combined to produce a single "High Dynamic Range" image will not be considered for the contest.
• In order to be considered for inclusion in the GDB calendar, high-resolution digital files of the winning photos must be available to send to GDB at the close of the contest. (A high resolution file is 8 megapixels or larger – many cell phone photos will not qualify.) If for some reason the winning photos are not high-resolution digital files, GDB will work with the winner to highlight the photo in another GDB channel.
• This online contest is the sole platform for calendar photo submissions – be sure to enter, vote, and encourage others to vote for your best chance of success!
• Guide Dogs for the Blind reserves the right to utilize photo submissions in any manner deemed appropriate, beyond the scope of the 2015 calendar project.
GDB will also be promoting the contest, so be sure to stay tuned to the GDB Facebook page for highlights and updates. We hope that you will participate, and look forward to seeing all of the great submissions!

Click here to enter the Puparazzi Calendar Photo Contest:

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

PACTT Handler Workshop, Assessment and Orientation

By: Karyn Munford (GDB Dog Placement Coordinator - Oregon)

My dog Ceili and I are now ready to go to the next step in becoming a PACTT (Portland Area Canine Therapy Teams) team. The elements looked for in this phase are: handler skills, dog skills, and communication skills. All should be done with ease, confidence and a friendly demeanor. Treats and appropriate handling equipment such as head collars are encouraged if needed.

The Handler Workshop Phase and Assessment Phase
During the workshop, GDB Community Field Representative Deana Allen thoroughly explains and demonstrates necessary skills. The group teams (up to five teams) then each have an opportunity to practice and ask questions. After the workshop, a time and date is be set for the assessment phase. Criteria to be assessed includes overall dog grooming and appearance, basic obedience such as sit, down, and stay:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice sitting
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice sitting

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice the command "stay"
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice the command "stay"
Loose leash walking:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice loose leash walking
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice loose leash walking

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice the command "come"
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice the command "come"

Passing by a dog, noise sensitivity, ignoring a dropped item:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice ignoring a dropped item
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice ignoring a dropped item
Petting by a stranger:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice petting by a stranger
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice petting by a stranger

Petting by a circle of strangers:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice petting by a circle of strangers
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice petting by a circle of strangers

All criteria must be performed with the handler possessing the skill of multitasking between controlling and caring for their dog while engaging with the person they are visiting:

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice interacting with a patient on bed
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) practice interacting with a patient on bed

The Orientation Phase
The orientation phase takes place at DoveLewis when teams are given a look at the opportunities and choices for pet assisted teams. They are guided by Kathy Loter, who is the Pet Assistant Team Coordinator at DoveLewis. They are then fit and equipped with the Pet Assisted Therapy team jacket and badge.

Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) interact with Kathy Loter of DoveLewis
Karyn and Ceili (Golden Retriever) interact with Kathy Loter of DoveLewis

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Guide Dogs and First Aid

Submitted by: Maile George, GDB Alumni Association and Co-chair of the Outreach Subcommittee

As responsible GDB graduates, we do everything we can to keep our guide dogs fit and healthy. We take them to the vet, groom them, provide flea and heartworm prevention, feed them an appropriate diet, care for their gums and teeth, trim their nails, clean their ears, provide plenty of fresh water, exercise with them, and love and play with them! Another aspect of caring for our guide dogs is being prepared to deal with a medical emergency. During the March Speaker Series call, we learned why it’s important for us to remain calm and confident during an emergency medical situation.
The call was led by Peggy Rew, Nevada’s only American Red Cross Dog & Cat Basic First Aid & CPR Instructor. Peggy taught us about the supplies we should have on hand in our homes, in our backpacks and/or in our office drawers. We also got tips on wound treatment, hypothermia/frostbite, heat stroke/heat exhaustion, seizures and shock, bee stings, snake bites, dog and wild animal bites, burns, poisoning, choking, CPR, broken bones, drowning, calming techniques, nausea, diarrhea, and sap, ice ball, tar and gum removal.

Other recommendations for GDB graduates:
• Enroll in a canine First Aid class taught by a Red Cross certified CPR and First Aid instructor
• Assemble a canine medical kit- preferably one for the home and one to keep with us as we go about our daily activities. Become familiar with how to use each item contained in the kits
• Download the American Red Cross “Pet First Aid” app
• Establish a credit card specifically for use in the event of a guide dog medical emergency. This is important if the emergency occurs on a weekend or holiday, or before or after regular office hours at GDB – the times when authorization numbers cannot be issued
• Learn how to check vital signs
• Keep handy an accessible list of telephone numbers for a local cab company, your dog’s veterinarian, a local 24-hour emergency pet hospital, and the toll-free animal poison control center

GDB ALUMNI SPEAKER SERIES Reminder: Meet Chris Benninger, GDB’s New CEO!
You are invited to join the Alumni Association Board for a Town Hall meeting where we will welcome our new CEO, Chris Benninger.
Thursday, May 8th, 2014 @ 4 :00 PM Pacific Time
Call In Toll Free Number: 1-877-668-4490
Access Code:  2 0 2 9 0 0 7 4
Mark your calendars - hope you will be able to join in!