The first school for seeing-eye guide dogs was opened in Germany on January 29, 1929. Now, we celebrate seeing-eye guide dogs every January 29th, the anniversary of the opening of the first training school. Seeing-eye guide dogs are remarkable, highly trained creatures that open up a world of possibilities for individuals living with visual impairments.

5 Cool Facts About Seeing-Eye Guide Dogs

1. Not All Working Dogs Are Seeing-Eye Guide Dogs
Seeing-Eye Guide dogs are specially trained to assist individuals with visual impairments. However, not all working dogs know how to do this specific job. Other working dogs undergo special training to perform other tasks such as helping individuals with physical impairments, detecting signs of seizures in individuals who have epilepsy, or sniffing out harmful or dangerous substances.
2. Only Three Breeds Can Become Seeing-Eye Guide Dogs
Not all dogs are cut out for the work that seeing-eye guide dogs are destined for. Only dogs of the right temperament and intelligence can learn to do this important job, and they are all labrador retrievers, golden retrievers, or German shepherds.
3. Seeing-Eye Guide Dogs Can’t Work With Anyone
Seeing-eye guide dogs and their handlers undergo extensive training together. As a result, the dog becomes bonded to its handler, and only their individual handler truly knows how to communicate, work with, and be assisted by the dog.
4. Seeing-Eye Guide Dogs Look for Danger
Seeing-eye guide dogs are not trained to memorize city maps or the layouts of their handlers’ homes. Instead, they’re trained to recognize signs of danger such as overhead obstructions, objects blocking a pathway, or traffic. When they see these signs of danger, they alert their handlers by exhibiting special behaviors.
5. You Should Never Pet a Seeing-Eye Guide Dog (or Other Working Dog)
It’s never okay to pet a seeing-eye guide dog or any working dog doing an important job. The safety of these dogs’ handlers depends on their ability to stay focused. Affection and attention from anyone other than the dog’s handler are major distractions.

High-Quality Veterinary Care for Working Dogs and Companion Animals Alike

Whether you have a specially trained working dog or a companion pet who has simply learned how to love you, at TangleWilde Veterinary Clinic, we specialize in providing high-quality, personalized veterinary care to all of our patients. To learn more about the comprehensive care we provide to all animals or to schedule an appointment at our Houston veterinary clinic, we welcome you to contact our office today.