Thank you for the recent photograph by Dylan Slagle (“Carroll County puppy trainers guide Labs, shepherds to become capable companions for those in need,” Jan. 16). The photo shows local puppy raiser Chris Bohmer and her current pup-in-training, a yellow Labrador retriever named Brahms.
However, in The Sun’s regional print edition, the caption on a stand-alone photo neglected to identify the name of the outstanding organization that runs the guide dog program overseeing this duo’s training. The dog belongs to Guiding Eyes for the Blind in Yorktown Heights, New York. The dog is in Baltimore temporarily because Guiding Eyes has a Baltimore area chapter of local volunteers who do a variety of jobs including puppy raising. After learning house manners as well as beginning skills for guide dog work, these dogs return to the guide school in New York for specialized training. Indeed, there are many guide and service dog organizations doing excellent work, but I believe that you were remiss in not giving Guiding Eyes for the Blind its proper due.
I have been volunteering approximately 20 years for GEB. I just love their dogs and this organization. Chris Bohmer remains one of our outstanding puppy raisers. She’s raised 12 dogs so far. She’s one of many great people who help GEB. Puppy raising is a volunteer job. As GEB says, it “is an act of generosity that will have a profound impact on someone’s life. It is a considerable commitment, but a very rewarding one. Many of our raisers get involved because it is a project that individuals or families can do while meeting people who also love dogs and want to help others. Learning life lessons, giving to others and learning about dogs are among the reasons people are drawn to raising a potential guide dog puppy.”
Inspired by your photo, I hope more people will be interested in getting involved with Guiding Eyes for the Blind’s Baltimore chapter. As they say, “Raise a puppy, change a life.”
Elizabeth Levy Malis, Cockeysville
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