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Loving Canines Of America

July 23, 2020

Guide Dogs of America, a non-profit organization that empowers the blind and visually impaired to live with greater confidence, mobility and independence, recently announced their merger with Tender Loving Canines in an effort to provide even more services to Veterans, Individuals with Autism and facilities in need – ultimately transforming lives through partnerships with service dogs.

The newly formed organization will be headquartered in Sylmar, California, on Guide Dogs of America’s 7.5-acre campus. TLCAD will retain its name and local offices in San Diego, California.

“TLCAD shares our goal to transform the lives of people through partnerships with highly trained assistance dogs,” said Russell Gittlen, president of Guide Dogs of America. “This merger will allow us to put more dogs into the hands of people that need them – which is our ultimate mission.”

All programs and services are provided at no cost to the recipients, and will be offered to individuals throughout the United States and Canada.

What is a Guide Dog versus a Service Dog?

A Guide Dog is a type of service dog that is specifically trained to assist someone who is disabled by a visual impairment/blindness. A guide dog can help their visually impaired partner confidently navigate the world by avoiding obstacles, remembering common routes, stopping at changes in elevation and avoiding traffic.

A Service Dog is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability. Other service dogs can assist veterans, individuals with learning disabilities and other disabled populations. Service dogs that are not in the guide dog category may perform behaviors that interrupt physiological responses to stress. They can also assist with mobility limitations, retrieving objects, opening doors, etc.

The work that is done through Guide Dogs of America and Tender Loving Canines would not be possible without the contributions of generous donors. More than 170 fundraising events are hosted on an annual basis across the US and Canada – however with COVID-19, many 2020 events were cancelled, which is why they need your help now more than ever.

To mark this momentous occasion, Guide Dogs of America is celebrating the many contributions of their staff, volunteers, partners and students. Funds raised this season will allow them to continue providing Guide Dogs and Service Dogs free of charge to qualified recipients.

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