There are nearly 400 puppy raisers in 22 states and Canada. Puppy raisers travel to Leader Dogs for the Blind in Rochester, Michigan, to pick up and return their puppies.
Seventy percent of puppy raisers raise more than one puppy in their lifetime.
Puppy raisers receive their puppies at 7 to 8 weeks of age and return them to Leader Dogs for the Blind between 12 and 15 months of age.
- Churches, stores, amusement parks, sporting events
- Different types of people
- Different types of floors and stairs
- Different sorts of animals, including squirrels, cats, birds, dogs and farm animals
- Loud sirens
- Busy sidewalks and bicycles.
Some puppy raisers are able to take their puppy to work with them . Puppy raisers are responsible for meeting at least monthly with their puppy counselor. Volunteer puppy counselors are regionally placed. Counselors organize obedience lessons and exposure opportunities for the puppies.
Raisers provide health care, food and necessary supplies for the puppies.
Puppy raisers follow very specific guidelines, such as:
- When puppies are in public wearing their “Future Leader Dog” bandannas or jackets, they are expected to be clean and well mannered.
- Puppies will be taught to stay off furniture .
- Puppies are expected to lay quietly at meal time and not beg.
Each month, approximately 30, 1-year-old puppies are returned to Leader Dogs for the Blind to begin formal training .
Kristi is devoted to raising these wonderful dogs, and giving them a terrific head start for the life they are going to lead. This German Shepherd/Lab mix will be her tenth! Moses was a "Career Change", one is undergoing training now, and 7 have been placed as Leader Dogs.