The Impact of a Leader

By Abby Ribeiro | Leader Dogs for The Blind Communications Intern

My name is Abby Ribeiro and this is my starting week at Leader Dogs for The Blind as the marketing and communications intern. As one of my first tasks on the job I sit in and observe interviews with clients done by the marketing team. Leader Dog’s staff does interviews with clients about a week after the clients have received their Leader Dog and begun training with them. By this point, the client still has much training to do with their dog, but they have already experienced opportunities to travel to different kinds of environments with their dogs, and they have begun to form a bond with their dog.

Upon sitting in on my first interviewing of clients about the process of getting their dog, I did not know what to expect. I quickly learned these interviews will overfill one with emotions. Each client was equally as enthusiastic as their dog. All the clients are true inspirations by having such high spirits and a glowing attitude.

Every client came from a different place and had a unique story as to how their Leader Dog would change their life. One heartfelt reaction the clients had in common was their answer to the question, “How will having a Leader Dog impact your life?” When asked this question, Donna Elliot answered, “It gives me freedom. It gives me eyes. It gives me a new way of seeing life. How do you say thank you for something like this? Words don’t seem like enough.”


Everyone concluded that having a Leader Dog will give them back their independence and freedom.


Listening to them speak about their dogs was an eye-opening and humbling experience. When the clients talked about their dogs, there was nothing but bright smiles when describing them as their intelligent, enthusiastic, kind and loving companions. Seeing the impact and confidence Leader Dogs gives to our clients brings me happiness, hope, and left an impact on me.

RECOMMENDED BLOGS & VIDEOS

Close-up photo of a woman looking into the camera wearing a black face mask with a white Leader Dog logo on the left side. There are crinkles around her eyes that make it appear she may be smiling. She is holding a white cane.

Webinar: Leader Dog’s COVID-19 Safety Protocols

In the sixth installment of our webinar series, team members ...
A woman with a white cane walks down a sidewalk on a sunny day. There is an arch with a bar through the middle placed on the sidewalk in front of her. This is an obstacle for her to practice working around.

Orientation & Mobility Experience at Leader Dog

By Client Justin Whittington When writing my articles, I try ...
Rod sits on a low wall outside near green grass. He is wearing a white polo with a vintage Leader Dog logo and smiling at the camera. A German shepherd in Leader Dog harness sits next to Rod on the ground.

Congratulations to Rod Haneline!

We are pleased to announce that Rod Haneline has been ...
Ashley is standing at a curb on the sidewalk of a tree-lined street. She is smiling at the camera and walking with a yellow lab in Leader Dog harness.

Clicker Training Your Dog

By Guide Dog Mobility Instructor Ashley Nunnelly In this post, ...
A yellow lab in leather Leader Dog harness sits on a sidewalk looking up at the camera. Its mouth is open as if smiling. The legs of the person standing behind and holding the dog's leash are visible.

You Can’t Legislate Respectful Behavior

By Client Joanne Lax We have plenty of laws in ...
Ashley sitting in a chair with a light gray blanket over her legs. She is leaning over to give a pointy-eared merle dog a kiss

Dogs Don’t Speak English

By Guide Dog Mobility Instructor Ashley Nunnelly Wouldn’t it be ...
Your input makes us better!

Take the 3-minute survey and help us better connect with you and other compassionate supporters who want to help people who are blind become unstoppable.