Fact file

Our guide dogs

  • The average working life of a guide dog is six to seven years. 
  • At the end of 2015, there were 4,994 guide dog owners in the UK.
  • We are responsible for around 8,000 dogs at any one time – active working guide dogs and those enjoying their retirement.
  • We breed in the region of 1,300 guide dog puppies each year.
  • We matched more than 843 people with a guide dog in 2015.

Our money

  • We rely on donations to continue our life-changing work. Every pound raised makes a difference to people in the UK living with sight loss.
  • It costs just under £55,000 to support a guide dog from birth to retirement.

Our work beyond guide dogs

  • Not everyone with sight loss wants or is suited to having a guide dog. Our innovative service, My Guide, equips volunteers with the skills to become a sighted guide to help people get out of their homes and back into the community.
  • We provide a number of services to support children and young people at all stages in their lives – from the challenges of getting an initial diagnosis, to finding the educational support that’s right for them, to finding the most appropriate technology that enables them to study and play – right through their journey into adulthood.
  • We campaign to end discrimination against people with sight loss. We are campaigning to stop people with guide dogs being refused access to services, places and vehicles; for audio visual announcements to be compulsory on new buses; and to end pavement parking.
  • We fund important research programmes, gathering evidence in fields from dog behaviour, psycho-social research to the built environment, that help us to develop services that will have the most positive impact on the lives of people living with sight loss.

 




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The key facts and figures, all in one place

Below are PDFs of our key messages and related documents:

Changing Lives
Cost of a guide dog
Guide dog journey
How we raised and spent income
My Guide
Our dogs and breeds
Our staff
Our volunteers