Guide Dog Program

  • There are currently over 1.1 million people who are blind and partially sighted in the U.S. alone who can become more independent if they receive mobility training.
  • Leader Dogs for the Blind offers independence and mobility to people who are blind and visually impaired.
  • Leader Dogs for the Blind was incorporated in 1939 and its first class consisted of four people.
  • Today, Leader Dog runs 12 guide dog classes per year with up to 24 clients in each class.
  • Each guide dog client attends a 25-day residential program.
  • Dogs are trained for four months prior to being matched with a client.
  • 250 client/guide dog teams graduate annually.
  • Leader Dog does not receive federal, state or United Way money and is totally reliant on voluntary contributions to fulfill its mission.
  • Leader Dog also teaches Deaf-Blind clients to work with a guide dog.
  • Utilities to maintain the residential program cost about $430,000 annually.
  • The Leader Dog food service department prepares approximately 170 meals per day and uses 2,000 dozen eggs, 1,800 pounds of beef, 3,000 pounds of chicken and 1,200 loaves of bread annually.
  • The 65,000 square foot kennel space houses up to 315 dogs.
  • The average inventory of dogs requires in excess of 122,000 pounds of dog food annually.
  • There are more than 13,500 graduates in 49 states, 7 provinces and 31 countries.