‘Grayson’ is one of our special young dogs who was recently celebrated at a Puppy Progression Party and has now entered formal Guide Dog training.
Like all other Guide Dog pups, ‘Grayson’ had a great start in life in a loving home with volunteer Puppy Raisers. Here he learnt all the basics like obedience, walking on lead and how to use travelators.
‘Grayson’ was a very lucky pup because he had not one but two loving Puppy Raising homes throughout his time on the Puppy Development Program.
Judith and Matt started raising ‘Grayson’ when he was just a young pup. They decided to try Puppy Raising for the first time after Judith had two eye operations, which left her unable to do much with her eyes. When she recovered, she saw an ad for Puppy Raising and decided to apply.
“Having my eye operations gave me such a sense of what it’s like for people who are blind or vision impaired. I just felt such a sense of hopelessness and it made me want to do something.
“There’s an immense sense of responsibility that comes with raising a pup and at first we wanted to do everything perfectly. After a while you get used to the pup and you just learn to go with the flow and go with the dog.”
Towards the end of his time on the Puppy Development Program, ‘Grayson’ went to live with Coral and Graham, who have now raised four pups. They originally began Puppy Raising because Coral’s mother was blind and had a Guide Dog, so she always wanted to give back.
“It is the most overwhelming experience but you just learn so much. ‘Grayson’ was a great teacher and in the end the things we thought would be difficult weren’t difficult at all.
“It can be a challenge at times but it’s all so worthwhile. When I saw ‘Grayson’ standing up there at his Puppy Progression Party it made it all worth it and I couldn’t recommend doing it enough.”
Being a Puppy Raiser is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world. You get lots of love and cuddles but at the end of the day you know you’re helping to change lives. Click here to find out more about becoming a Puppy Raiser.