Buddy dogs for children
Companion dogs for children and young people
At Guide Dogs we believe that a dog buddy can make a remarkable difference in any child’s life by fostering a sense of responsibility and companionship through the human/animal bond.
Due to an overwhelming demand of the buddy dog service, our mobility teams have had to close their waiting lists to new applicants. However, our teams will continue to provide a range of other services for children and young people such as mobility, orientation and independence training and are still accepting applications for guide dogs to support young people.
Buddy dogs, or companion dogs, are guide dogs that haven't qualified to work as mobility assistance dogs but can improve the quality of life of children and young people who are blind or partially sighted by:
- contributing to sensory and physical development
- enhancing their confidence and self-esteem
- countering isolation and depression
- increasing levels of exercise and improving their communication skills
In some cases, a buddy dog can help to assess whether a child or young person with vision impairment could benefit from a guide dog in the future.