More than 200 walks will take place across Canada on May 29 to arrange for life-changing matches between dogs and Canadians with disabilities. The walks are being arranged as part of thePurina® Walk for Dog Guides program.
“Kiwi is an extension of my arms and legs,” says Tammy Walsh who was matched with Kiwi, a standard poodle specially trained to open and close doors and cupboards, pick up dropped items, retrieve objects out of reach, and even help with the laundry. “She really is a canine personal support worker,” says the Brampton, Ont., resident who uses a wheelchair.
Like all Dog Guides, Kiwi was provided to Walsh at no cost by Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides, despite a price of $25,000 the charity incurs to breed, train, and match each service dog. The Purina® Walk for Dog Guides is the organization’s largest fundraiser, and thanks to title sponsor Nestlé Purina PetCare, 100 per cent of funds raised go directly toward the foundation’s six specialized programs. The annual event has gained momentum over 30 years, last year raising more than $1,195,000 nationally.
About Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides:
Lions Foundation of Canada is a national charity with a mission to assist Canadians with medical and physical disabilities by providing them Dog Guides at no cost. Its founding program, Canine Vision Canada, was established in 1985 to assist Canadians with visual impairments, and since then, the Foundation has added Dog Guide programs including Hearing Ear, Service, Seizure Response, Autism Assistance, and Diabetic Alert. To date, more than 2,300 Dog Guides have been placed with people across Canada. The cost of raising, training and matching a Dog Guide with a qualifying Canadian is $25,000, but none of that cost is passed on to the applicant. The organization receives no government funding. – CNW