Raisers may have the option to adopt the dog they raised, providing they meet the eligibility criteria and agree to a number of conditions when signing the Released Dog Agreement.
When making the decision regarding adopting the pup they raised, raisers should consider our Special Placement Adoption Program. The important decision made will also continue to contribute exponentially to the Guiding Eyes mission. These dogs often draw attention as ambassadors for Guiding Eyes, as they move through the world in their new role. As these dogs are observed in community settings, others will ask about their beginnings, and the Guiding Eyes story will continue to be told far and wide. Some dogs become companion dogs for people with special needs, or therapy dogs visiting veterans, nursing homes, or hospitals. It is quite an honor for the dog to be selected for a special placement adoption. All Guiding Eyes dogs truly change lives.
Eligibility Criteria and Requirements
- The raiser is able to meet the specific needs of the dog as determined by Guiding Eyes.
- The raiser was the primary raiser for a consecutive period of at least 6 months. This eligibility does not extend to other family members, friends, or secondary raisers. Passing the dog to a relative or friend is not permitted and is in violation of the adoption agreement with Guiding Eyes. If the adopter can no longer provide for the dog, he or she should contact Guiding Eyes immediately. Guiding Eyes will work with the adopter to find a new home for the dog and will consider the adopter’s placement recommendations. In all circumstances Guiding Eyes retains the right to decide final placement of the dog.
- If the dog was in the Breeding Program with a sitter/foster for 12 months or more, the sitter/foster has first option to adopt.
- If there are multiple primary raisers, the final raiser, if he or she had the dog at least 6 months, has first option to adopt. If that person does not adopt, then the most recent previous primary raiser, having the dog at least 6 months, is given the option to adopt.
- Adopters must agree to Guiding Eyes’ adoption policies, including providing access to the dog and its records and completing health and temperament surveys. Upon the dog’s passing the adopter must provide Guiding Eyes with the date and cause of death for our genetic records.
- All contact information must be kept current. Failing to keep us up to date on the status of the dog will affect your future opportunities at Guiding Eyes.
Making Your Decision
After you raise a puppy to maturity, hearing it will not be considered for guide work can be a disappointment. It often takes time to adjust to the idea and consider what is best for both for the dog and the raiser. However, we ask that a decision is made as quickly as possible – within 5 days – so the dog does not spend a long time in the kennel.
In making the decision, raisers should consider the following:
- Do I have the time to devote to continue training, exercising, grooming, and caring for this dog?
- Do I have the financial resources necessary to provide for the veterinary care, medications, and special diet if required?
- Would I like to raise another puppy, and will that be possible with another dog in the house? Would this dog be a positive influence on a new pup? (Often an older, trained dog can be a great teacher to a new pup, however the time and attention required will double.)
Raisers can contact a Region Team member or the Manager of our Released/Retired Dog Program for additional information or support.
Released Dog Placement Profile
Raisers are required to submit a Final Raiser Report. This information is helpful in identifying the right adopter for the dog, should the raiser choose not to adopt.