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Close-up photo of the faces of man and German shepherd/golden cross.

Transforming challenges into Opportunities.

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Morris Frank & Buddy made history in 1928 when they arrived in New York City as the first dog guide team in the United States. Frank stepped off the curb to cross West Street, astounding the throng of reporters when he and Buddy safely reached the other side.
This European drawing depicts a man being led by a dog guide in 1639. Other clues exist that suggest that the use of dogs to lead people who are blind began as early as 79 A.D
After reading an article by Dorothy Harrison Eustis, Morris Frank wrote Mrs. Eustis and asked that she train him with a dog guide. In return, he traveled across North America, spreading the word about these specially trained dogs. Eustis and Frank founded The Seeing Eye.
A Seeing Eye instructor follows behind two female students as their dogs lead them across a busy street. The streets of Morristown have served as The Seeing Eye's extended classroom since 1931.
Shepherd puppies await a ride in one of the school's earliest puppy vans. Today, about 800 volunteer families raise Seeing Eye puppies in conjunction with 4-H Clubs in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and parts of Delaware and New York.
The Seeing Eye's main campus is about 90 acres, situated just outside the Morristown, N.J., town limits. It overlooks the historic Washington Valley and includes an administrative building, student boarding and dining facilities, kennels, and a canine health center.
Instructor Georges Debetaz, one of the school's first instructors, was with The Seeing Eye for 43 years. His statue, on the front lawn of the main campus, also honors all those who trained thousands of dogs and their owners over the past eight decades.
A one-third mile walking path provides a relaxing place to unwind, for students, staff, and dogs.
The campus overlooks the bucolic Washington Valley, which replicates the rural settings of some students home towns. Just minutes away, downtown Morristown reproduces the busy streets, frequent construction projects, and tempting smells of city life.
Instructors spend four months training about 10 dogs at a time, then spend the fifth month instructing in-class students in the use of those dogs.
Dogs must learn intelligent disobedience, which means that they must disobey any command that would lead to danger. Here, an instructor follows behind a student as he and his Seeing Eye dog practice working around an obstacle on the sidewalk.
Seeing Eye dogs learn five basic commands: "forward," "left," "right," "hup-up" to quicken the pace, and "pfui" to correct a mistake. After introducing a dog to these commands and to the harness for a few days on campus, the instructor begins in "real-world" settings.
One day each year, every puppy-raising volunteer is invited to The Seeing Eye to watch training demonstrations, pictured here, and learn more about the school's programs. It's just a small way to say "thanks" for all our puppy raisers do!
With basic skills mastered, dogs are ready to learn more about traffic. Seeing Eye instructors drive cars in controlled situations to teach dogs the danger of traffic and the tools to respond to it, as well as to teach students how to interpret their dogs' reactions to nearby traffic.
The Breeding Station in Chester, N.J., houses about 60 adult dogs, especially selected for breeding based on factors such as family history, health, temperament, breed, and size. The kennel design is based on interconnected geometric pavilions so that the dogs can see each other and see people enter the room.
This litter of Labrador retrievers catches a snooze in between playtime. Once they're a little older, staff members and volunteers entertain and socialize the puppies in special playrooms equipped with toys designed to build confidence and knowledge.
This mom and her pup thrive in a sun-filled pavilion where all the dogs have access to private outdoor areas. Throughout the Breeding Station, special care is taken to guard against introduction of germs or contaminants.
Breeding Station employees enjoy a visit by television celebrity Betty White. About 640 puppies are born each year at the facility, which opened in 2002.
The Seeing Eye breeds and trains, from left, yellow Labs, German shepherds, black Labs, golden retrievers, and chocolate Labs. We also breed and train Lab/golden crosses and occasionally train boxers.
When puppies reach the age of about 7 weeks, like these three golden retriever pups, they leave the Breeding Station to spend the next 15 to 17 months of their lives with volunteer puppy raisers.
Before conception even occurs, throughout training, and until the end of its working career, a Seeing Eye dog has been directed to its special destiny with the benefit of science. The Seeing Eye continues to lead the way in its research in canine genetics, breeding, disease control, and behavior.
This playful German shepherd puppy might someday become the perfect half of a dog guide team. Variations in temperament, size, strength, stride, and energy are characteristics that must be closely matched to create a successful partnership.
Exposure to all types of settings and situations, as this puppy enjoying a professional baseball game can attest, ensures that dogs entering formal training have the best chance of success. Puppy-raising clubs plan frequent outings so that as adults the dogs are calm and confident under a variety of circumstances.
When puppies return to The Seeing Eye for formal training, the importance of playtime does not diminish. Play yards in the kennels are equipped with lots of toys and are staffed by people who spend their days in constant interaction with dogs.
A teenager gets his first experience traveling with a dog guide after first walking the same route with his cane. Several times a year, The Seeing Eye Seminar for Youth hosts teens who are beginning to investigate whether or not travel with a dog guide is right for them.
Global Positioning Systems open up the world to the blind. This graduate wears equipment that verbally tells him his exact location. Seeing Eye instructors work with graduates to help them maintain the safety of the team while learning to integrate GPS into their travels.
A sculpture of The Seeing Eye's co-founder Morris Frank and his dog Buddy now stands in downtown Morristown. In 2005, current President Jim Kutsch, left, unveiled the statue as sculptor J. Seward Johnson and former President Kenneth Rosenthal looked on.
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