Over the last few years we’ve supported Guide Dogs with several fundraising events and the hard work has finally paid off…
We are pleased to welcome “Jenson” who is a future Guide Dog in the making, looking super cute in this photo that was sent to us when he was about 8 weeks of age.
We are proud to have raised over £5000 in recent years, all of which has been donated to Guide Dogs and this has allowed us to name a puppy. We ran a competition amongst the Brentknoll staff to decide what name we were going to choose and our winner was Veterinary Nurse Julie Jenkins who (thanks to a racing interest) decided on Jenson.
As a sponsor, we have been getting regular updates from Guide Dogs who have been keeping us up to date with his progress in reports on his training and sending us lovely photos as he’s been growing up. It’s a great feeling being his sponsor and we can’t help but feel a little biased towards our handsome boy.
8 Weeks old
At around 8 weeks old, Jenson was introduced to his volunteer puppy walker, she is hugely important to his development and will be responsible for socialisation and introducing him to as many sights, sounds and experiences as possible. Jenson has been also get them used to being on a lead and begin basic behaviour puppy classes to learn basic commands.
6 Months Old
Jenson is getting on well with his training and is a typical puppy, interested in everything new he comes across, he’s a very laid back young boy so will hopefully make a very calm Guide Dog in the future.
We were lucky enough to finally get to meet Jenson in May this year and the staff fell in love with him immediately (who wouldn’t). He came in to the practice with his puppy walker, training supervisor and friend Poppy (an older Guide dog who works visiting schools, hospitals and events).
His puppy walker tells us that he has begun his recall training off lead and he is getting on well with it so far, although he does get distracted when he sees other dogs around. She tells us that he is very good on his lead but seems to be particularly distracted by dandelions!
When Jenson turns 1 year old it will be time for him to leave his puppy walker and go back to school in his smart new brown training
harness. He will be taught important things like walking in a straight line unless there’s an obstacle, not to turn corners unless told to do so. To stop at kerbs and wait for the command to cross or turn left or right. To judge height and width so that its owner does not bump their head or shoulder and to deal with traffic.
Once he has completed his training Guide dogs will match him to a suitable owner, this involves some pretty technical factors like the length of owner’s stride, their height and lifestyle. He will train with his new owner for 4 weeks and then hopefully go on to change that persons life for the better.
Did you know that it costs around £50,000 over the life of a Guide Dog, so they rely on fundraising to continue to do the wonderful work they do. If you are interested if finding out how you can help visit http://www.guidedogs.org.uk/