A CORK-based charity is looking for dog loving volunteers to foster new training puppies.
'Puppy Raisers' work with Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind by taking care of their puppies from when they are eight weeks to 12 months old.
The puppy lives in the volunteer's home and under the direction of Irish Guide Dogs' Puppy Raising Supervisors, learns basic rules and obedience.
At approximately 12 to 14 months they move into the charity's National Training Centre and work towards graduating as a guide dog for a person who is vision impaired, or an assistance dog for a family of a child with autism.
Puppies that do not make the grade to become a guide dog have a number of other career paths to follow, including ambassador and community dogs.
Those who become Puppy Raisers need to live within two hours of the charity's Model Farm Road headquarters.
"Living in a volunteer’s home is crucial to the development of the puppy," said Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind.
"All veterinary fees and feeding costs are covered and when you go on holidays we’ll find a nice home for your pup."
To volunteer, you must have no more than two neutered dogs already in your home and have access to a secured outdoor area.
Puppy Raisers needed in Leinster & Munster.— Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind (@irishguidedogs) February 22, 2022
You’ll benefit from the satisfaction of #ChangingLives, the reward of seeing a puppy develop in your home and the opportunity to learn new dog training skills.
Find out more https://t.co/93pjKbpITk pic.twitter.com/PEMDm1Ytjr
Any children in the home must be over five years of age and puppies cannot be left alone for more than four hours.
"Retired people and families with children generally make good Puppy Raisers, but anyone can apply, and having pets doesn’t necessarily exclude people," said the charity.
Labrador and Labrador-golden retriever crosses are the typical breeds of the puppies.
The organisation are holding webinars with more information on March 3 and March 24 from 7pm to 8pm.
Click here to learn more.