Guide dog breeds
When selecting a dog breed there are several factors to take into account: the health of the parents, the absence of congenital problems, its character, size, fur, the level of dominance, aggressiveness, adaptability, concentration, motivation and its ease of learning.
The three most used dog breeds as guide dogs are Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds. The cross between a Labrador and Golden is also being very successful lately. These three breeds have a good temper, are very intelligent and eager to learn and work.
The last breed used as a guide dog is the Standard Poodle. It is a very intelligent dog breed and very capable of learning. In addition to this, they don’t shed so it is perfect for users who have allergies.
The Labrador Retriever breed, also known as The Small Water Dog, originates in Terranova, Canada. Fishermen knew that Labradors liked water and they used them to help bring the ropes between the ships and also to get back and pull fishing nets. They have also been used to hunt and to help with the grass. Their readiness to work is a very valuable feature of these dogs.
It is also the breedmost usedas aguide dogdueto itsintelligence,its friendly and gentlenature and itsability to adapt to different environments. Nonetheless,its weaknessis food: they are are verygreedyand that makes them easily distractible.
Color variesfromlight gold and almostwhite to chocolate brownorblack.Their coatishard,denseand short.
The Golden Retriever breed also known as the Golden, originated in Scotland in the late 1800s. This breed was also used for waterfowl hunting because of their swimming abilities.
These dogs are full of initiative, very responsive although somewhat stubborn when they don’t like the task that they have to do. However, they obey and learn quickly.
This breed isintelligent, very activeandhas a strong personality. Golgens are confident dogsand theyadapt very wellto differentenvironments.
Their coat is almost alwaysgold, withlong and densefur.
The German Shepherd also known as Alsatian originates from Germany. Their namewasgiven fortheir workas guardiansand protectorsof the flock. This breed isquiterecent, from 1899.
The German Shepherd breed was the first dog breed used as a guide dog in training schools.
They are very intelligent, dynamic and decisive dogs. They have a great ability to adapt, they are hardworking and also have a great willingness to learn.
German Shepherds are agile and active dogs, with a muscular physical complexity and a strong temperament. This dog needs its walker to know about this breed and to have empathy with them.
Their fur color varies from black to brown and from reddish to black. However, white dogs, like the Swiss German Shepherd, also exist.
In order to select the dogs that will be trained to be guide dogs, it’s important to start considering their parents. The breeding department choose the dogs that seem more suitable to be breeding dogs. The animal’s character is taken into consideration and no agressive sign is allowed. A thorough veterinary examination ensures that the animal is free of heritable and morphological diseases.