News from LINC

Working Guide Dogs

When you meet a working guide dog team, it may be tempting to pet the guide dog. Remember that this dog is responsible for leading someone who cannot see. The dog should never be distracted from that duty. A person’s safety may depend on the dog’s alertness and concentration.

Although guide dogs cannot read traffic signals, they are responsible for helping their handlers safely cross a street. Never obstruct the dog’s path or call out to the dog. It may break their concentration on their work.

Listening for traffic flow has become harder for guide dog handlers due to quieter car engines (like EV’s) and the increasing number of cars on the road. Please don’t honk your horn or call out to signal when it is safe to cross, that can be confusing. Instead, be especially careful of pedestrians in crosswalks when turning right on a red light.

It’s not all work and no play for a guide dog. When they are not in their harness, they are treated the same way as other pets. However, for their safety they are only allowed to play with specific toys. A guide dog represents a significant investment, and their safety is important.

You may encounter a guide dog wearing a head collar, which is a humane training tool that helps a dog become calm and focused. The head collar is not a muzzle and permits the dog to fully open its mouth and can even be worn when the dog is eating, drinking or playing.

The ADA permits guide dogs to accompany their handlers anywhere the general public is allowed, including taxis and buses, restaurants, theaters, schools, hotels, and office buildings. They are trained to stand, sit, or lie quietly in public spaces when not leading.

If you would like more information about guide dogs, go to their website or call 1-800-295-4050.

LINC has three offices to serve you.

1182 Eastland Drive North
Suite C
Twin Falls ID 83301
(208) 733-1712 VOICE
(208) 733-7711 TDD

1878 West Overland Road
Boise ID 83705
(208) 336-3335 VOICE
(208) 336-3335 TDD
(208) 384-5037 FAX

703 S. Kimball Ave
Caldwell ID 83605
(208) 454-5511 VOICE
(208) 454-5511 TDD
(208) 454-5515 FAX