Small and Mighty
Meet Demi, Future Guide Dog
When most people see guide dogs, the dogs have their “game face” on. They’re focused on the job. And that’s exactly how we want them to be when they’re working. But each one is also an individual and, at the end of the day, still a dog. So, meet Demi, a young black Lab who’s just about to finish her guide dog training and find out whom she’ll be partnered with.
Senior Instructor Stephanie Koret says she knew very early on that Demi would be a great guide dog. “She excelled at clicker training, and she enjoyed figuring out what to do to get the food,” Stephanie said. “She’s small, only about 53 pounds, but I say she’s small and mighty because she makes up for her small size with her big personality. She has a real ‘can do’ attitude. Not only can she do it, she wants to do it. And she has these sweet, round, light-brown eyes that kind of peer into your soul, and always a wagging tail.”
Stephanie remembers one of the first times she gave Demi a real challenge, walking down a sidewalk around a variety of obstacles. “When she reached the curb, she looked up and she was so proud of herself. It was like she was saying, ‘I’m here! I did it!’ She’s very excited to show me that she knows what she’s doing.”
Demi takes her job very seriously. But she takes her playtime seriously too! True to her retriever nature, she’s always got a toy in her mouth when she’s in the dog run at the training center. Not to fetch or chew on—she just likes to carry it. Especially into one of our doggie pools on a warm afternoon, where she can splash around to her heart’s content. Watching her, you might forget she’s a dog with an important career!
So, what kind of person will be right for Demi? Stephanie says Demi is such a polite young lady and so patient, she could be paired with almost anyone. She’d be perfect for a first-time handler and even someone who isn’t too familiar with dogs. The only thing she needs for sure, according to Stephanie, is someone who will appreciate her affectionate personality and give her a lot of chin scratches to keep that tail wagging.
Demi is a “Pathfinder pup.”
Our Pathfinder Society are friends who’ve chosen to include Guiding Eyes for the Blind in their estate plans, and they get special updates and progress reports about one of our dogs in training—like Demi. See the ad in this newsletter to find out how you can become a Pathfinder!