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Guide dog – what you should know

The role of a guide dog is crucial for efficient access to public spaces for the blind. Thanks to his help, getting away from home becomes much easier and above all safer. Without his help, the daily lives of the blind were even more complicated. What exactly is the work of such a dog? I will try to bring you closer to his role in this post.
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Dog pilot

First of all, guide dog takes care about the safety of he’s owner, giving him signals about the threats lurking in the hustle and bustle on a public space. A guide dog needs maximum focus to be able to fully take care of master’s safety. Therefore, never distract the pooch when he guides his guardian.

What is interesting, not every quadruped can become a guide. To this end, the dogs undergo a specialized training that prepares them for fieldwork. Being a guide dog is a very responsible and difficult task, which is why it is so important for a dog to undergo a comprehensive course.

Guide dog characteristics

As I mentioned earlier, not every pooch can become a guide. This is a very responsible role. Therefore, to be able to perform this function, the dog must have a predisposition to do so. Quadrupeds of such breeds as Labrador Golden Retriever, German Shepherd or Border Collie are mainly chosen for training. In the beginning, it is necessary to assess the susceptibility of the pooch to training and the ease of acquiring knowledge. The dog must quickly understand new skills and also be very obedient. A good dog guide is one who can react quickly in a crisis, knows how to assess the level of lurking threat.

A dog that will act as a guide should be able to establish a strong bond with he’s guardian. He can’t be afraid of contact with people. What’s more, such a pooch should be resistant to stress, and also be able to cope with an unforeseen situation. The guide dog must be rational. It is also important that the pooch does not show a tendency to be agresive towards humans or other animals.

It happens that during the training it is decided to stop preparing a given pooch to act as a guide. Of course, this does not mean that there is something wrong with this quadruped. However here are cases, that during the course, dog behavior reveals, he is not very well suited to guide’s duties. Dog characteristics such as excessive openness and willingness to make contact with strangers can be a significant problem. Such behaviour of the pooch could interfere with the full protection of the blind person.

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What is the work of a guide dog?

So what exactly the guide dog have to do? First of all, he’s main purpose is to care for the blind person’s safety. Doggy helps him to move in public places, avoid obstacles and dangers. Usually, the dog leads he’s master in the middle of the sidewalk because in this way he can look around the area most effectively. The guide dog informs a blind person about significant irregularities on the route or curbs.

If it is possible, the dog will direct he’s master in such way to avoid the obstacle efficiently. If, while moving, he encounters stairs or other difficulties, the pooch stops and pass this information using a special signal. What’s more, it is worth mentioning that the dog monitors the obstacles located not only on the ground but also those at the level of he’s master’s head.

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In addition to taking care of master’s safety while moving, the guide dog also facilitates functioning in public spaces. It allows him to indicate a space in a means of communication or a park. Interestingly, when doggy thinks that the command issued by the owner may not be possible to carry out or is dangerous, the pooch is supposed to refuse to carry it out.

A guide dog starting work with a blind person has many skills that allow him to fully perform his duties. However, the end of training in hes case does not mean the end of learning. Such a pooch learns to work with he’s master all the time. He learns his habits, tries to understand his behaviours and basic needs.

A very important task of a guide dog is the ability to draw conclusions resulting from the behaviour or commands of his master. The doggy must read correctly what the person he looks after intend to do. The dog learns places that are important to his master. He can efficiently guide to reach the selected destination whether it is a loved one’s home or a favourite store.

Guide dog’s everyday life

A dog that acts as a guide for a blind person has a very important and responsible task to perform. He must be constantly vigilant and ready to act to ensure the master’s safety. However, you must remember that despite his responsible role, the guide dog has the same needs as other home pets. He needs tenderness and love, as well as time to play and rest. Therefore, you should also ensure that such a pooch has something to play after a busy day. Favourite toy will make a dog’s time off work more pleasant. Keeping the right balance between work and leisure will allow a pooch to feel good and at the same time effectively perform his daily duties.

How to behave in the company of a guide dog?

If you do not want to upset the guide dog while he performs his daily duties, you must know how to behave properly towards him. First of all, him can’t distract him in any way. This applies both when the blind person moves with the pooch or rests. The guide dog must be ready for any situation. Therefore, do not call such a quadruped or even try not to pet it.

You don’t have to be afraid of being in guide dog presence. Although such dogs are not the small dogs, they are trained to interact with people. They know what behavior is allowed and what is unacceptable.

The work of a guide dog is a very difficult and responsible. Dogs that perform this function enable blind people to move efficiently and safely around places where they would find it extremely difficult to do so on their own. They deserve great gratitude and recognition on our part. Do you have any experience with dog guides? I encourage you to share them in the comment.

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