You wouldn’t place your hands over the eyes of someone driving a car but, according to experts, you’re doing just that when you distract a guide dog from his work.
On International Guide Dog Day, Guide Dogs NSW/ACT is reminding people that these dogs have an important job to do.
Guide dogs undergo two years of training, including obstacle navigation and road safety, but can still be distracted by members of the public
“Guide Dogs play a vital role in enabling people who are blind or vision impaired to get around independently and interference from members of the public can compromise this,” says Dr Graeme White, CEO of Guide Dogs NSW/ACT.
“Any distraction to a working Guide Dog can put its handler’s safety at risk. If a Guide Dog is distracted while guiding its handler across the road, the consequences could be tragic.”
International Guide Dog Day honours and celebrates these incredibly hard working service dogs and their long-standing dedication.
Seeing-eye dogs have been in existence since the time of World War I, when people took notice of how good they were at locating injured soldiers wounded in battle.
This idea quickly spread into a real concept after the war ended, and dogs accompanying the blind as we know it today was born.
The first Guide Dog to be trained In Australia was Beau, a Kelpie/Border Collie cross, in Perth in 1952.