Our Stories

Embracing Independence: The Power of Guide Dog Training

23 August 2023

Client Stories

A photo of Blind Low Vision member, Laura with her guide dog Ryder walking outdoors.



We extend our heartfelt gratitude to each and every one of you who has already made a difference in the lives of so many through your kind contributions. Together, we have achieved incredible milestones and empowered kiwis who are blind, deafblind or have low vision to experience newfound freedom and independence. Today, we want to share an inspiring story about Ryder, a fully trained guide dog who has transformed Laura’s life, and shed light on how your generosity is shaping the future for a new generation of guide dog heroes.


Ryder: A Beacon of Hope

Ryder, a remarkable guide dog, has become an unwavering source of freedom and companionship for Laura, his owner. The skills he acquired during his training have been life-changing for Laura, empowering her to overcome challenges and embrace new opportunities. Whether it’s walking her children to school or confidently navigating public transport, Ryder has proven to be an indispensable asset in her life.

However, Ryder’s impact extends far beyond the practical aspects of assistance. He has gifted Laura an intangible sense of liberation and empowerment. Laura beautifully expressed, “He’s given me my freedom. He’s given me wings.” And it is all thanks to your support that these extraordinary transformations become possible.


Training the Future Heroes

Within our organisation, we have a delightful group of adorable puppies who are destined to become guide dog heroes—just like Ryder. These young pups embark on a journey of training and development, where they will acquire the skills needed to lead visually impaired individuals with confidence and grace.

Their training is a multifaceted process, encompassing various essential aspects. From safely navigating busy streets to fearlessly interacting with people, these puppies must master every aspect of their responsibilities. They are taught to exhibit initiative, ensuring they can guide their human companions effectively. Furthermore, they must learn to resist temptations, staying focused on their partner’s needs at all times. However, this transformative journey does not come without a cost.


Empowering Through Support

The journey to transform a guide dog puppy into a superhero can be financially demanding, with a single dog’s training costing upwards of $50,000. Supporters of Blind Low Vision NZ, like you, have played a pivotal role in providing these puppies with expert training from skilled professionals.

With your kindness and compassion, you have given these puppies a chance to fulfill their destinies, spreading hope and independence to those in need. Your support creates a ripple effect, empowering not only the lives of the visually impaired but also their families and communities.


Unleashing Independence Together

Each and every one of our supporters have played an integral role in empowering kiwis who are blind, deafblind or have low vision and helping guide dog puppies, creating a world of inclusivity and compassion. By supporting their journey, you have been instrumental in transforming lives, just like Ryder did for Laura.

As we celebrate the stories of transformation and look toward the future, we invite you to continue this journey with us. Together, we can nurture the next generation of guide dog heroes, enabling them to bring freedom, joy, and hope to countless lives.

With your continued support, we can ensure that these guide dog puppies receive the training and care they need to make a lasting impact in the lives of kiwis. Your contributions truly change lives, and we are deeply grateful for your unwavering dedication to our cause.

Let us embrace independence together and empower a brighter future for all.


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