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Home Litter Care

Caring for a litter of adorable Guiding Eyes puppies can be one of the most extraordinary opportunities Guiding Eyes has to offer.

Care for a litter in your home

Home Litter Care volunteers welcome a brood dog and her newborn puppies into their home, providing a safe and positive environment for them, and a joyful and fulfilling experience for themselves. For 3 to 5 weeks, HLC volunteers provide the loving care, gentle massage, and progressive socialization these puppies need to thrive, and a supportive atmosphere with gentle exercise for the brood, as she cares for her pups. The time needed to properly care for these treasured houseguests depends upon the size of the litter.


If you become a Home Litter Volunteer, you will play a critical role in giving these potential future guide dogs a strong beginning in their first weeks of learning and growing. Guiding Eyes provides all the equipment, training and support necessary to ensure a positive and rewarding experience.


We’re excited that you might consider becoming a Home Litter Care volunteer. In this section you will find much of the information you need to make an informed decision, and we’re also available to talk through any questions you may have.  If you live within one hour of our Canine Development Center in Patterson, NY, please carefully review our program requirements to see if being a Home Litter Care volunteer is the right opportunity for you!


Home Litter Care volunteers must:


  • Live within one hour of the Canine Development Center in Patterson, NY.
  • Successfully complete 1 to 2 afternoons of training at the Canine Development Center.
  • Commit to 3 to 5 weeks of continuous care.
  • Be willing to travel to Guiding Eyes facilities, (Yorktown or Patterson, NY), for veterinary care if needed or in case of emergency.
  • Be able to provide an area in the home to house the brood and puppies, that’s heated and air conditioned with sufficient room and a durable floor that can be easily cleaned and disinfected.
  • Have flexibility in their schedule to allow early morning, afternoon, and evening care.
  • Keep the area pen clean, fully scrubbing and disinfecting once per day, plus frequently changing newspaper.
  • Feed the brood and puppies three times per day.
  • Socialize the puppies in progressive age-appropriate sessions each day.
  • Take the brood for four to five short walks per day.
  • Keep household pets separate from the brood and puppies.
  • Adhere to vaccination protocol for other dogs in the home.

Support We Provide

  • Previous experience is a plus, but not necessary. Guiding Eyes provides you and your family with all the necessary training. Family members primarily responsible for the care of the litter must attend the training class, but we respectfully request that small children do not attend the training.
  • 24 hour emergency care is available if the brood or one of the pups gets sick. Guiding Eyes Veterinary staff is on call for health and veterinary concerns. We provide 24-hour emergency contact numbers for both the Veterinary staff and the Whelping Kennel staff.
  • Home Litter Care volunteers are provided with all the equipment and supplies needed for puppy and brood care, including a pen, a crate for transportation, leash, food, bowls, and toys. This does not include newspaper nor a surface protector for floors (strongly recommended).


Have a question? Email us at

Home Litter Care Application

Home Litter Care enriches the lives and experiences of our puppies when you share your home environment. A brood and her puppies are placed in your home, under your care, for a period of 3 to 5 weeks. If you fulfill the eligibility requirements and are interested in this extraordinary experience, we look forward to receiving your application.


All volunteers are asked to review and adhere to a Code of Conduct.

For additional information, please contact Elizabeth Martin at

Home Litter Care Application

Must live within 1 hour travel time to Canine Development Center

Click all that apply

It is helpful for us to know where you work. We will not contact your employer without first notifying you.

HLC Staff Only