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Dissertation

Perceptions of Guide Dog Users on Their Dogs’ Impact on Their Lives

12 April 2006

Abstract

Since 1929, dogs have been trained in the United States to guide the blind and visually impaired. While there are numerous testimonials and personal accounts on how dog guides change the individual lives of their blind handlers, there is a paucity of research on this topic. The intent of this study was to conduct a survey of dog guide users and specifically ask about their beliefs on how a dog guide has affected their life. The results of this survey provide quantitative data that support the conclusion that for the most part dog guide users believe that their dogs have positively changed their life. The two areas identified as problematic are the dog receiving attention while working and individuals being less likely to go somewhere if they are unable to take their dog.


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