We help people with severe visual impairments

Training guide dogs

Our training school is small. We are dedicated to home training and the dogs are part of our households. The dogs are extremely happy and we know their personalities to the minutest of details. We do not have a training centre as such, but we do have training facilities where we can train a larger number of dogs at once, where the dogs can learn from interacting with each other. Great emphasis is placed on the personality traits of the dogs we take for training. We provide ideal conditions for gentle, empathetic and easy-to-manage dogs. We are also able to distinguish the energy the dog requires for training, to allocate it to a suitable owner and to prepare a physically and mentally hardy dog that is willing to do for its master whatever it learns in training. Complete information is provided about the positive and negative qualities of each dog and we explain what works on them and what they do not like.

The dog is under regular veterinary supervision during rearing and training and undergoes medical tests. MVDr. Zbyněk Lonský is in charge of the regular veterinary supervision of puppies and adult dogs. This supervision takes in x-ray examinations of the joints in the legs, examinations of the eyes (ocular fundus), laboratory tests and castration.

Training barriersOur many years of experience and that those of our colleagues from home and abroad help us choose breeds and specific dogs for training. The Labrador Retriever and its close relative the Golden Retriever, reliable, easy-to-manage and calm, are used most here and elsewhere. We would also like to revive the training of German Shepherds in the Czech Republic; these dogs are very popular in the country and were once much used. Neither do we have anything against training other suitable breeds. What is important is that a particular animal is right for the relevant conditions in terms of its personality traits, temperament, manageability and health.

Nice rideTo make sure that a dog is well trained for its role, it must have enough time to learn all the required skills. The training period ranges from six to nine months and the dog should be between 18 months and 36 months old when delivered to the owner.

Training guide dogs has had a clear set of rules since 2012, laid down in Act No. 329/2011 Sb., and according to Annex 2 to Decree No. 388/2011 Sb. a guide dog must be able to master 34 skills to make it a guide for a blind person. Training is completed with a final test, in which the dog shows that it is safely able to master all these skills. The test is taken on a previously unknown route, along which the dog takes its instructor, who is unsighted the whole time. We have an experienced assessor and a court-approved expert in our team for testing dogs.

In terms of the rules and conditions for training, we follow the standards of the International Guide Dog Federation – IGDF.