My theme for the 2021 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge is to give an overview of what it is like to be visually impaired and to discuss topics regarding the community to bring more awareness to these topics. Today’s topic is guide dogs.
Guide dogs are specially trained to guide those that are blind or have low vision. Guide dogs can do the following;
- guide a person around obstacles
- alert a person when there is a step or curb ahead
- Guide a person to the door of a room or building
- Guide a person to the elevators
- Find and guide a person to an empty seat on a bus or train
- Find and guide a person to a street crossing light pole
- Guide a person to the curb
- They can prevent a person from walking into oncoming traffic by refusing to move forward if a car is in the way. (this is called intelligent disobedience)
Guide can not;
- Act as a GPS and guide a person to a specific store
- Guide dogs can not decide to cross the street on their own
I do not have a guide dog so I can not share my personal experience on this topic but you can learn more in the videos below. Guide dogs are provided at no cost to a blind or visually impaired person through guide dog schools. There is a lot of training that must take place for both the dog and the future guide dog owner before they can be a team.
Here are some things to keep in mind when you see a person with a guide dog on harnus. When a guide dog is on harnus this means that it is working.
- Do not pet a guide dog when the dog is working
- Do not talk to a guide dog when it is working
- Do not distract a guide dog when it is on harnus
Guide dogs do important work. Learn more about the work they do in the videos below.