A Day at Leader Dogs for the Blind
Friday, May 30, 2014
Did you ever wonder what happens at Leader Dog on a daily basis? The short answer is—a lot! Just look at a few of the things that happened around campus on Friday, May 30.
Residential Custodian Angela passes the emergency phone and pager to Residential Assistant Kim in the morning along with updating her on any happenings with the clients in class.
Dog Care Supervisor Sue checks the pills and dosages for any dogs needing medication.
Carol in puppy care takes Murphy (a dog in training who had double elbow surgery) out to “park” and stretch his legs. Puppy care takes care of puppies, breeding stock dogs and other dogs (retired, career changed, etc.) who need special attention and care.
Jenny and other guide dog mobility instructors (GDMIs) load dogs in basic training on the truck to take them to downtown Rochester for training. Each dog must sit before entering the vehicle.
In our kitchen, Cook Stella makes rice crispy treats for an afternoon snack for clients.
Puppy Care Volunteers Eric Malloy and Dennis Chrzan check the food chart before preparing the puppies’ first meal of the day. Volunteers also clean puppy runs, wash dishes and toys, do laundry and walk breeding stock dogs.
Maureen, Mike and Roxane of the facilities team clean up the kennel lobby prior to opening to the public.
Amanda Smith (guest O&M specialist from Topeka, KS) chats with Erica, manager of extended services, before going downtown to learn about guide dogs and GPS while Erica headed up to her office to work on her budget.
Some of our staff at Leader Dog also volunteer their time in other departments. Jennifer works in dog care and also volunteers once a week in client services. Here she heads to client services with her newly adopted career changed dog, Feather.
Volunteer Master Gardener Liz Berkheiser tends to our flower beds around campus.
GDMI Randy walks alongside a client and his new Leader Dog for their first traffic-checks, which are controlled practice runs where a vehicle pulls out in front of the client and Leader Dog team, and the Leader Dog must exercise intelligent disobedience to stop the team from getting too close to the vehicle. Vehicles are typically driven by GDMIs.
Beth, Carla and Kathleen of the Lions engagement team discuss Lions summer visits, which are special weekend events where Lions club leaders are invited to the Leader Dog campus to learn more about what goes on here. Beth’s dog, Kipper, takes a nap on the floor.
Facilities team members Dave and Arnold unload a gardening cart from the downtown facility. The downtown building is a jumping off point and resting place for clients and dogs when they are practicing in the busy Rochester downtown area.
Dr. Wilson evaluates a puppy before taking her over to Pawsitive Steps Rehab for some therapy during her lunch break.
GDMIs Debbie and Jill take Pro Seminar guests (O&M specialists on campus to learn about guide dogs and GPS) on a blindfold walk to experience traveling with a Leader Dog.
Future Leader Dog Kellen rests in a little nook at the reception desk and practices being calm in a work environment.
Food Services Aide Reyna makes sure the clients get what they need as they gather in the dining room for three meals a day during their stay. Today, clients were served tuna salad with fruit and French bread for lunch.
Puppy Raiser Nancy Colombo waits in the lobby with the current dog she is raising, Future Leader Dog Ripley, to get his regularly scheduled vaccinations from the veterinarian.
Puppy Raiser Hannah picks up her first Future Leader Dog.