SIGHT loss charity ‘Guide Dogs’ have launched an urgent appeal for volunteers in Bromsgrove that could give a loving home to one of their canine mums.
Volunteer ‘Breeding Dog Holders’ support the charity by providing homes for the mums and helping them when they have their litters of life-changing pups.
The mums need regular walks, care and company, like any other pet dog, and Guide Dogs covers all food and veterinary costs.
Guide dog litters are born in volunteers’ homes, with 24-hour support from Guide Dogs’ staff.
Between six and eight weeks of age, puppies move to the charity’s state-of-the-art national centre near Leamington Spa for health and temperament checks, before starting their service dogs journey.
Most guide dogs start formal training when around a year old but a small proportion of them follow a different journey and become a guide dog mum or dad instead.
The guide dog mums are looked after until they retire around six years old. After this holders can keep the mum they have cared for as a pet.
Kelly Newton, Guide Dogs’ operations managers, said: “We’ve launched an urgent appeal this new year, asking the people of Bromsgrove and surrounding areas to provide a loving, permanent home to one of our guide dog mums.
“We provide all the training and equipment required so you feel well-prepared to care for our mums, and their puppies, when they arrive.
“Our guide dog mums can live with other animals and children too, providing it is the right environment for them.”
Volunteers must be aged 18 or over and live within an hour’s drive of the Guide Dogs National Centre, near Leamington Spa.
Anyone interested in offering a loving home to a guide dog should email volunteering coordinator Melanie Brown at [email protected] or call 0800 781 1444.