June 18, 2024

Lisa Clark and Jenny Truax
accompanied by Twig and Fido, their respective guide dog puppies

Raising Puppies with Guide Dogs for the Blind

Featured Brewery: New Image Brewing

Lisa and Jenny will walk our audience through the journey of young pups until they are teamed up as working guides with their blind or visually impaired partners.

You’ll learn the differences between raising a pet dog versus a puppy in training through the lens of the largest guide dog school in North America. You’ll also learn about “campus life” for the dogs, as well as other career paths available to dogs who, for various reasons, do not become guides.

Speaker Bios:

Lisa Clark was first introduced to the guide dog lifestyle by one of her residents during her stint as a Resident Adviser in college. The bond Lisa observed between the resident and her guide dog left a lasting impression. Years later, when her pet dog with large personal space requirements passed away, Lisa started puppy raising with Guide Dogs for the Blind (GDB). Lisa’s first puppy in training, Starlet, was “career challenged” and is now very happily living the pet lifestyle with Lisa replete with agility and nosework. Currently, Lisa is co-raising Twig, a loveable, zipper-nosed female black lab. She has also recently begun to lead the newly formed Golden Puppy Raisers Club for Guide Dogs for the Blind, a group that already boasts four puppies in training. Lisa considers herself “puppy rich,” which is exactly as chaotic and delightful as it sounds.

Jenny Truax is a self-proclaimed dog lover (a beer lover). In 2005, she was sitting across from a guide dog team in a restaurant and was brought to tears by witnessing the bond they shared. This made her curious about what it takes to become a guide dog, when less than a week later a coincidental series of events led her to meet a puppy raiser with Guide Dogs for the Blind. She started raising her first guide dog that same year. She raised two dogs—Italy and Hutch—that gradated as working guide dogs, then adopted a ”career challenged” guide dog named Hartley as her pet from 2008 to 2022. In 2023, as she pondered the idea of another dog in her life, Jenny randomly met Daisy Philtron, a mutual Golden resident that was raising Jetson for GDB. Daisy and Jenny started co-raising Jetson, who is now in his final testing before being paired up with his partner to become a guide dog. Jenny is currently raising Fido as her fifth guide dog puppy with Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Twig and Fido—as well as Lisa and Jenny—look forward to meeting you!

How This Works
The Buffalo Rose will open at 6:00 p.m. Food and drink service will begin at 6:00 p.m. and the program will begin around 6:30 p.m. Following the presentation, we’ll take a brief intermission for Q + A. We’ll wrap up around 7:45 p.m., but people interested in staying a bit longer to socialize will be able to do so. There is no cover charge and no purchase is necessary.

Please check out podcasts of Past Talks.