and men have formed partnerships for many centuries.
Possibly the first animals to be domesticated,
and since then dogs have variously been used
for hunting, herding, guarding and as companions.
Whilst it may be true that you cannot teach
an old dog new tricks, it is also true that
humans will always try to find new ways of utilising
the skills of man's best friend.
Some of the new roles dogs now perform on a
daily basis include:-
Dogs specially trained to help people manage
physical or emotional problems.
for Blind or Partially Sighted Owners
There is no doubt that “guide” dogs
have expanded the possibilities for blind people
to go to many more places and enjoy happier
and more fulfilled lives. Many blind and partially
sighted people put total trust in their guide
dogs, often taking their life in their hands
- for example, crossing a busy road. Their dogs
also make it easier to move about in snow, ice,
mud and other rough conditions
A new service that gives partially sighted children
and young people the chance to build vital communication
and mobility skills. They are retraining dogs
that weren’t quite suited to our full
guide dog programme and placing them with families
and schools. Young people get the opportunity
to feed, groom and walk their buddy dog –
and ultimately gain the skills they might need
for future guide dog ownership.
Hearing dogs for the deaf.
In the UK there are nearly ten million people
with some degree of hearing impairment
Many of these people have had there lives changed
by dogs trained to alert their severely, profoundly
or totally deaf owners to sounds that many of
us take for granted. Everyday sounds which hearing
people may take for granted dogs will respond
to such as:-
• Alarm clocks
• Cooker Timers
• Smoke alarms
• Baby alarms
The dogs communicate by touch and then lead
owners to the sound source, providing the deaf
person with greater independence and confidence,
as well as companionship and feelings of security.
Dogs for the Disabled (Service Dogs).
In an effort to improve the quality of life
for many people with disabilities, dogs have
been trained to:-
Open and close doors, collect post, put rubbish
in the kitchen bin take clothes out of the washing
machine, turn lights on or off, push elevator
buttons, pull wheelchairs or even take off someone’s
socks. They can also fetch a wide variety of
things on command and recognise several objects
by name, including 'fetch the phone' which could
be vital in cases of any emergency. Dogs can
even pick up crutches and sticks.
Dogs are increasingly being used in active therapy;
this may involve visiting hospitals, care facilities,
nursing homes, etc. to cheer up patients. Studies
of dogs interacting with autistic children have
shown that dogs calm them down tremendously
just by their presence and with specific tasks
such as grooming a dog; the children can learn
to focus on a task, something that's very difficult
for an autistic child.
Dogs trained with specific skills useful in
many environments outside the home.
Increasingly dogs are used in more specialist
areas such as in water rescue and in the search
for human buried in earthquakes, landslides
Bomb and drug detection
The dog’s keen sense of smell is sensitive
enough to detect minute trace amounts of many
compounds, this makes them very effective in
screening objects, it is claimed that some trained
dogs are able to recognise over 20,000 explosive
Mould detection dogs are regularly used in European
countries such as Denmark and Germany, where
mould has been known for decades to be a problem
in buildings, they will sniff out mold hiding
behind baseboards and walls in houses, office
buildings and schools.
Pet Dog Information.
Advice about dog
finding the best pet dog for you
and your family.