Buddy dogs for children

Companion dogs for children and young people


Due to an overwhelming demand of the buddy dog service, our mobility teams have had to close their waiting lists to new applicants. However, our teams will continue to provide a range of other services for children and young people such as mobility, orientation and independence training and are still accepting applications for guide dogs to support young people. 

At Guide Dogs we believe that a dog buddy can make a remarkable difference in any child’s life by fostering a sense of responsibility and companionship through the human/animal bond. 

Buddy dogs, or companion dogs, are guide dogs that haven't qualified to work as mobility assistance dogs but can improve the quality of life of children and young people who are blind or partially sighted by:

  • contributing to sensory and physical development
  • enhancing their confidence and self-esteem
  • countering isolation and depression
  • increasing levels of exercise and improving their communication skills

In some cases, a buddy dog can help to assess whether a child or young person with vision impairment could benefit from a guide dog in the future.

Want to know more?

If you would like any further information about buddy dogs, please call