Blind dogs can be trained! They can be taught to sit, stay, shake and come like any other dog, with only a little extra time needed to show them what to do through touch. My blind dog knows that when I say "Wait," he is about to bump into something. He immediately slows down and stops, then take a turn around the obstacle. Blind dogs cannot read the body and facial expressions other dogs use so successfully and purposefully to project anger, fear, protectiveness and annoyance. Blind dogs also cannot read human expressions and may not realize when a person is preoccupied, distracted or angry, perhaps reacting with unwanted playful exuberance or fearful avoidance. These dogs can be trained easily to understand commands like "not now," "don't worry" or "go lay down." We also urge blind dog owners to share their training techniques with other readers.
In shelters and rescues, there is rarely enough time to train blind dogs so that they become more socializable, have greater confidence and are engaged in their environment. These dogs often become fearful and react with depression, aggression and timidity. Tootsie's Vision hopes to help financially support professional training for behaviorally challenged blind dogs in shelters and rescues so they can be more interested in the world around them, feel more secure, become more sociable and are more likely to be successfully adopted.