BC & Alberta Guide Dogs

By on Jun 4, 2024 in Giving

BC & Alberta guide dogs with owners

Guide dogs are a precious miracle for many. BC & Alberta Guide Dogs is a Yardi-supported nonprofit organization founded in 1996 in Delta, Canada, that breeds and professionally trains guide dogs, autism service dogs, and OSI-PTSD service dogs for citizens of British Columbia and Alberta, Canada.

BC & Alberta Guide Dogs is not just a place; it’s a community. It hopes to raise awareness, attract new volunteers (puppy raisers), and raise funds for its Capital Campaign—a new building. Support, whether through volunteering or donations, keeps them going.

Learn the journey timeline a guide or service dog takes to become such an asset:

  • Breeding & Care: focuses on the human-dog bond for up to eight weeks
  • Training with Volunteer Puppy Raiser: eight to 15 months
  • Formal Advanced Training: This is done in various settings with professional instructors for 18-22 weeks after the dog turns 15 months old
  • Training with Teammate: Done in the student’s home/living environment for 15 days
  • Follow-up Support: Yearly after-care visits. The dog’s working life averages about eight years, and it retires at the age of ten

Yardi funding gives BC & Alberta Guide Dogs a better marketing and outreach program to secure more volunteers and donations.

“Thank you for supporting us all these years through your corporate donations,” expressed Melissa Toong, marketing and communications coordinator for BC & Alberta Guide Dogs.

Team Terrific

BC & Alberta guide dog Shay and Reece

Living with autism is tough for not only the person living with autism but also for the family. Meet Reece, a child with autism, and Shay, his labrador retriever service guide dog, who has been a miracle companion and a source of hope for Reece and his family.

Shay entered Reece’s life in May 2023, and they have formed an incredible team from day one. Reece’s mother no longer must be by his side for normal mundane activities because now Shay works like clockwork and even tucks in with Reece for bed. Reece sits upright at dinner with Shay right by his side. Mom can even be in another room, knowing that Shay is there to provide service and comfort to Reece.

Reece can now button up his shirt, hold eye contact with others and follow two-step directions while caring for Shay. He can go to public places like the zoo, fairs, and camping trips, and he was even able to sit at his brother’s graduation ceremony. One of the most remarkable developments Shay has facilitated is Reece’s ability to voice his needs. He can express himself, preventing tantrums and improving his interactions with others.

His mom is eagerly looking forward to witnessing new opportunities and doors that will open for Reece with Shay by his side.

“I never imagined an extra set of hands or paws would make such a difference. Reece and Shay form a ‘Team Terrific,’ and Shay’s impact on our lives is immeasurable!”

Volunteer Opportunities

BC & Alberta Guide Dogs offers several volunteer opportunities to become a puppy raiser! Visit its website for more details on puppy raising, dog boarding and breeding/whelping programs.

Find future non-profit profiles at https://www.yardi.com/blog/category/giving.