Puppies are coming! Home Litter Caretakers Needed!

The Whelping Kennel is experiencing a greater need for Home Litter Caretakers. If you, or someone you know, are interested and live in the vicinity of the Canine Development Center in Patterson, New York, please contact the HLC Coordinator at emartin@guidingeyes.org for information on eligibility and how to proceed. For general information, please read below.  Thank you! 

Care for a litter in your home

Caring for a new litter of adorable puppies can be one of the most extraordinary opportunities Guiding Eyes has to offer.  Home Litter Care volunteers welcome a brood dog and her newborn puppies into their home, committing to their care for up to 5 weeks.

Guiding Eyes provides all the equipment, training and support necessary to ensure a positive and rewarding experience. Our volunteers provide the loving care and early socialization these potential future guide dogs need to thrive, while supporting the new mother as she cares for her pups.

If you live within one hour of our Canine Development Center, please carefully review our program requirements to see if being a Home Litter Care volunteer is the right opportunity for you!


We’re excited that you’re considering becoming a Home Litter Care volunteer. In this section you will find all the information you need to make an informed decision. We’re also available to talk through any questions you may have. Please feel free to contact the HLC Coordinator at emartin@guidingeyes.org.

A Home Litter Care volunteer must:

  • live within one hour of the Canine Development Center in Patterson, NY.
  • complete 1 to 2 afternoons of training at the Canine Development Center.
  • be able to travel to either Guiding Eyes facilities, in Yorktown or Patterson, NY, for veterinary care if needed or in case of emergency.
  • be able to house the brood and puppies in an area of the home, which is heated/air conditioned and easily disinfected.
  • have flexibility in their schedule to allow early morning, afternoon, and evening care.
  • keep household pets separate from the brood and puppies.
  • commit to 3 to 5 weeks of continuous care
  • have access to a local 24-hour pharmacy

Frequently Asked Questions

How much time will I need to set aside each day to care for the brood and puppies?

The time needed to properly care for the brood and pups depends upon the size of the litter.  Keep in mind care includes:

  • Cleaning − fully scrub and disinfect area being used by the brood and litter once per day, plus frequent changing of the paper
  • Feeding −  three times per day
  • Walking – four to five short walks for the brood per day
  • Early Socialization – progressive age appropriate sessions
  • Grooming –  weekly sessions of consistent care
How long will the brood and puppies stay in our home?

The brood and puppies will stay in your home for three to five weeks.

Do I need previous experience in caring for a litter of pups?

It’s certainly a plus, but not necessary. We will provide you and your family with all the necessary training.

Where does the training take place?
Does the whole family need to attend training?

The family members primarily responsible for the care of the litter must attend the training class. We respectfully request that small children do not attend the training.

Is 24 hour emergency care available if the brood or one of the pups gets sick?

Absolutely! We provide 24 hour emergency contact numbers for both the veterinarian as well as the Whelping Kennel staff.

Have a question? Email us at emartin@guidingeyes.org.

Home Litter Care Application

Home Litter Care aims to enrich the lives and experiences of our puppies by utilizing your home environment. A brood and her puppies are placed in your home, under your care, for a period of 3 to 5 weeks. Interested parties may submit an application to the Home Litter Care Coordinator.

For additional information, please contact Elizabeth Martin at emartin@guidingeyes.org.

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