A VIP – Very Important Pup – visited Nottingham City Transport (NCT) yesterday (5 May) to say thank you for setting it on a journey to becoming a guide dog.
Staff at NCT raised £5,000 to name the Guide Dog puppy George.
Little George, a yellow Labrador Golden Retriever crossbreed, is now five months old. He has already learned many of the basic obedience commands that will be used when he goes out into the world as part of a Guide Dog partnership.
Although this is George’s first visit, the staff at NCT have heard all about his progress over the last few months since they raised £5,000 to choose his name.
Anthony Carver-Smith, of NCT, says: “It was really exciting to meet George. It was also great to meet Zak and his puppy walkers and to find out all about the training and what his personality is like. These little things bring us closer to the whole process and it’s fascinating. Our staff have really come together to raise the money by organising raffles, fancy dress days and collections. NCT’s charity fund has also supported the activity by contributing to the sum and we’re already on our way to raising funds to name our next puppy.”
Kelly France, from Guide Dogs, added: “Puppy visits are really special. People get to witness that all the time and effort they put into fundraising has borne fruit in the training of this dog. It makes it all worthwhile. NCT are extremely supportive of us as a charity and also committed to help support people with sight loss. They’re dedicated to providing good customer service, as the majority of their fleet has audio visual ‘next stop’ announcements and they’re drivers also undertake our My Guide sighted guiding training. To raise money to name a puppy is the icing on the cake and we’re grateful to all the staff for their support.”
The £5,000 raised to name a Guide Dog puppy helps to support the dog with its early years training. It costs around £50,000 to support a Guide Dog partnership from the birth to retirement aged about 10. Guide Dogs does not receive any Government funding for this service. Without the generosity of public donation, the charity Guide Dogs would be unable to support the 4,600 Guide Dog partnerships in the UK.