Side by Side
Fall Winter 2017
Text Version

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Welcome to Side by Side, the official newsletter of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. This is the Fall/Winter 2017 edition, Volume 32, Number 2.

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is a founding member of the International Guide Dog Federation, a Member of Assistance Dogs International Inc., and a member of the Canadian Association of Guide and Assistance Dog Schools.

Our registered charity number is 1064 6819 RR0001.

Our website is

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The following litters were born from March 1, 2017 to August 31, 2017:

Parade, yellow Lab, female bred to Quartz, yellow Lab, male

Lilly, golden retriever, female bred to Sapo, golden retriever, male

Latka, yellow Lab, female bred to Noah 2, yellow Lab, male

Tikka, golden retriever, female bred to Striker, black Lab, male

Rosie 3, yellow Lab, female bred to Striker, black Lab, male

A sincere thank you to puppy walkers whose dogs have completed the Puppy Walking Program and breeding stock holders and boarders whose dogs have been used for breeding, from March 1, 2017 to August 31, 2017:

Brad Barton, Heather & John Chilvers, Margaret Coleman, Angela Faruki, Cindy Helps, Puneet Mann, Debbie McLeod, Daniela Pagliaro, Cecile Ritchie, Marlene Shepheard, Jennifer Snider, Monique Sturgeon, Jessie Thornton, Janet Tobio, Claire Todd, Darcy Tremblay, Lina Tsang, Nicole Whittle, Junrong Yu


Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind current Board of Directors includes the following members:

Heather E. Skuce, Chair
Edward K. Mann, Vice-Chair
Ronald Burns, Secretary
William Wolfenden, Treasurer
Mary Jane Binks, Director
Marilyn Guty, Director
Jane E. Thornton, Director


Donate your car to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind! No cost to you. Three easy steps. Visit and click on Donate Your Old Car for details on the Donate A Car Canada Program.


To celebrate Canada’s 150th, RBC gave thousands of Canadian youth $150 each, and challenged them to “Make 150 Count”.

The RBC Branch in Manotick gave Dylan Sova of Manotick, Ontario $150. He decided to contribute the funds to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind to assist training. Thank you Dylan!

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Puppy Raising Profile – Darcy Tremblay & Tosca 2

Darcy Tremblay was looking for the opportunity to raise a guide dog puppy back in 2015, when he applied to be a puppy walker for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Tosca was three months old when Darcy received her. The yellow Labrador retriever went on to spend eighteen months with Darcy, who found this to be a perfect opportunity for him, combining his love for animals and making a difference for those who need it most.

During the experience, Darcy got to play a critical role in raising this smart and amazing dog that will, hopefully, make a difference and significantly improve the quality of a person’s life for years to come. Darcy says, “She’ll literally be their eyes and maybe even best friend. Helping Tosca get to that point and goal doesn’t even compare to the role she’ll play until she retires, and that makes me happy.”

Darcy hopes others might consider the role of puppy walking. He adds, “This isn’t a guide dog trainer job, and you don’t need other qualifications, except a love for animals, patience, a desire to make a difference, and the capacity to spend most of every day with the dog, teaching basic obedience and socialization.” For Darcy, it was ideal, with a split between home and office. His workplace team at Amex all showed their philanthropic spirit and fully welcomed Tosca as part of the team.

“It’s awesome that Amex encourages good citizenship and organizes a wide range of Volunteer Day events throughout the year”, says Darcy, who gets involved with as many volunteer opportunities as he can. Darcy had to give up Tosca in May 2017. Tosca is now in formal training to become a guide dog at the National Training Centre of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.


Puppy Raising Profile – Rob Hanna and Jessica Beers & Eddie

Rob Hanna and his wife, Jessica Beers, have volunteered with Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind since August 2014. Their role as Puppy Walkers is to raise a puppy, teaching basic obedience and socialization, under the guidance of the organization. Z

The first pup they raised was a black Labrador retriever named Lucie. Currently, they are raising Eddie, a yellow Lab. Socialization is vital for pups in the program. This includes accompanying Rob or Jessica to grocery stores, banks, malls, restaurants, doctor appointments, movie theatres, fireworks displays, public transit, and even to work with Rob.

As a Coordinator, Material Recycling and Reduction, Rob’s work includes reviewing new development applications to ensure compliance with the Toronto Requirements for Garbage Collection for New Developments. Eddie has visited Solid Waste Management Services work sites to get accustomed to the various noises, scents, and activities he might come across should he graduate as a working guide dog. When Eddie is in the office, he is on leash, wearing his jacket that identifies him as a guide dog in training. Wearing the training jacket puts Eddie into work mode, where all his attention is put into behaving properly and focusing. This takes a lot of mental energy for such a young dog, who is still a pup. He stays with Rob throughout the day and is expected to sit and wait whenever he’s not walking around.

Eddie gets his down time too, just a playful puppy when he is not in jacket, still able to just be a dog, especially at home. In the public though, good behavior and obedience are key. When Eddie is mature enough, he will enter into formal guide dog training at the National Training Centre of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Ultimately, it is up to Eddie as to whether he shows the desire and demonstrates the skills to become a guide dog. Hopes remain high for Eddie to make a difference in someone’s life as a guide dog or assistance dog.

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This page features a recap of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind’s recent events.

Global Pet Foods’ 11th annual “Show Us Your Heart” Campaign took place in February 2017. For a fourth consecutive year, the store at 3191 Strandherd Drive in Barrhaven (Ottawa, Ontario) chose Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind as their charity of choice for this campaign. Global Pet Foods Barrhaven store is located just 6-kms from the National Training Centre of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Thanks to the Barrhaven location for choosing Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Pet Valu hosted their 7th annual “Paw Event” in April 2017. Pet Valu raises money for different charities or foundations, and the store in Hawkesbury, Ontario selected Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

On April 7, 2017, students from the Bachelor of Hospitality and Tourism Management program at Algonquin College hosted Flashback to the Fabulous Fifties, a fundraiser in support of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. The evening featured an incredible meal at Restaurant International, plus live music, a silent auction, and a few of our dogs. We thank Deanne, Jannat, Kristen, Lianna, Marta, and Phuongthao for organizing such a fantastic event.

Ottawa New Horizons Jazz Band donated their time and talent to host a concert in support of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind on April 29, 2017. The venue was donated by Orchard View Wedding & Event Centre in Ottawa. It was a fantastic evening of live music, dancing and fun. A very special thank you to Tracy & Carol at Manotick Veterinary Hospital, our community neighbours and supporters, who organized this amazing event for us.

Merivale Vision Care hosted an annual “Trunk Show” at their Ottawa location, raising funds for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind on May 11, 2017.

Chances R in Ottawa hosted their 8th annual Dining in the Dark event, in support of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, on May 15, 2017. The restaurant was completely blacked out, and diners wore a blindfold, to experience Dining in the Dark. The evening included two sold out seatings, with “unseen cuisine”. Diners were not told what was being served to them in the four-course meal. Caesar salad, followed by chicken parmesan and penne noodles proved to be the most challenging. This is such a fun event, which always sells out quickly. We appreciate the incredible support of Mike Bouris and Chances R, including all servers, who volunteer their time for this event, raising an incredible $5,000.

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This is a continuation of our events recap from the previous page.

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind hosted our 33rd annual fundraising dog walk, with Dollar$ for Dog$ on Sunday, May 28, 2017 at Andrew Haydon Park in Ottawa. The event featured a dog social, 4-km walk, BBQ and door prizes. Thanks to everyone who participated. The six walkers who attended our event in Ottawa and raised more than $1,000 each in pledges are: Sheila Burvill; Louise Bark, Anne Armitage; Lilo Volkmer; Jean-Marc Chenier; Pamela Middleton.

Rain did not dampen the spirt of those attending the Nine & Dine Golf Fun Day & Lobster Dinner on June 25, 2017. Cells of thunderstorms pulled golfers off the course twice, but most managed to get in most of the nine holes and were treated to an amazing full lobster dinner at the Canadian Golf & Country Club in Ashton, Ontario, in the west end of Ottawa. Due to the inclement weather, each golfer received a voucher to return and play another day at the golf club. Thanks to all those who attended.

Our annual UK Day Garden Party & Tea fundraiser took place at our National Training Centre on July 24, 2017. Patrons enjoyed live music by Rapid Eye Review and Brian Lynch, while they ate their scones and sipped their tea with imported Devon cream. Thanks to Clarence & Cripps for attending with their authentic British food & wares, and to Bakker’s General Store in Manotick for donating the Devon cream.

Each year, we open our doors to the public on our Open Tour Day. This year’s event was held on August 3, 2017.

Here are some of our upcoming events:

Thursday, November 9, 2017 York University Volunteer Fair
Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind will participate in York University’s Volunteer fair on Thursday, November 9, 2017 from 10am-3pm. We are seeking York University students to raise a puppy for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Stop by our booth to get more information.
Toronto, Ontario
York University Career Centre
202 McLaughlin College, 4700 Keele Street

Saturday, December 9, 2017 Christmas Bake Sale
Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind will host our 8th annual Christmas Bake Sale at our National Training Centre, 4120 Rideau Valley Drive North, in Manotick from 9:00am-12:00pm. Stop by to enjoy some baked treats, shop, and support our cause. There will be lots to choose from. (No outside vendors please)
Manotick, Ontario
Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind
4120 Rideau Valley Drive North

December 2017 Pet Photos with Santa
Pet Food ‘n More stores will host their annual Pet Photos with Santa event throughout December at all seven of their stores in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia (Vancouver area). Check for more details.
Lower Mainland, British Columbia

Fri.Dec.1 – Sun.Dec.24, 2017 Gift Wrapping Kiosk at Place d'Orléans
Look for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind at Place d'Orléans this holiday season as we’ll be hosting a holiday gift wrapping kiosk. We will be waiting to wrap your gifts in exchange for your donation. For a third consecutive year, Place d'Orléans has been kind enough to partner with us and grant us the space for this project. We will need volunteers to wrap gifts too. Email to add your name, if you would like to help this holiday season. In addition, be sure to stop by to have your gifts wrapped during all mall hours from December 1 – December 24.

Orléans, Ontario
Place d'Orléans, Community Kiosk
110 Place d'Orléans Drive

Check for a complete listing of our upcoming events.

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Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind operates solely through donations. You can contribute several ways.

Pre-authorized debits:
Arrange for automatic monthly withdrawals from your bank account on the first business day of the month. You will need to complete a PAD agreement. Email to request the agreement. A tax receipt will be issued at the end of the year for the total amount donated.

Online donation with the Royal Bank of Canada:
This is available only to RBC clients. Select Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind as the Payee and enter donation amount. You must have your individual Donor ID, which can be requested by email at by giving your name and address, or by phoning our office at (613) 692-7777 and speaking with our Bookkeeping Department.

Cheque or Money Order:
Make payable to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Cheques and money orders can be mailed to PO Box 280, Manotick, Ontario, K4M 1A3.

Donate in person at our National Training Centre, 4120 Rideau Valley Drive North, Manotick, Ontario.

Online donation via credit card payment:
Visit our website at You can donate using Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.

Monthly credit card payment:
Phone our office at (613) 692-7777 to set up payment on the first or the fifteenth day of each month. We accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. A tax receipt will be issued at the end of the year for the annual amount donated.

Gifts of shares, stock options, life insurance, bequests, wills and capital property:
Please call us for more information or have your legal or financial representative contact us at (613) 692-7777.

Thank you for donating to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

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Client Profile – Robert Cairns and Orchid 3

Rob Cairns was not aware of such a thing as an assistance dog when someone first mentioned to him that he should apply for one.

After being accepted for training, Rob recalls the first time he met Orchid. “I remember the van door opening and she jumped out and up onto me. For the first little while, she felt me out, as I did with her. Now, we can tell what each other is going to do. We are a team”, says Rob.

Orchid is very playful and loves to complete tasks for Rob. “Even something as little to everyone else, but major to me”, says Rob. “The harder time she has, the faster the tail wags and excited she gets. You can tell she is proud of herself. She is also aware that she will be getting a treat for completing her task. She can do so many daily tasks for me, usually things an able-bodied person would take for granted. Examples of these are: taking my coat off; bringing me a package of paper towels off the shelf at the grocery store; open doors by doing tug pull on a rope; and picking things up and bringing them to me.”

“My children and I have a favourite job for Orchid to complete that amazes everybody when we are out in public. This is helping me to do my banking at an ATM. People have brought out their cell phones to film her retrieving the bank card, then the money, and finally the receipt and bring them all to me.”

Orchid is a sweet dog and is very good with children. Rob says, “I love the innocence of children when it comes to a service animal. I love seeing their face when I teach them some of her capabilities. Then, I have the kids give her a piece of kibble. She is so gentle and the children’s faces light up”. Rob also commented on how children are often better behaved than their parents or adults. He often hears an adult telling a child ‘that’s a working dog, you can’t pet it’, right before they try to do so. It is the kids who are often more self-controlled in the situation.

The other comment Rob often hears is parents telling their children that he is blind and Orchid is a guide dog. Of course, that is not the case. Rob sees just fine, and Orchid is an assistance dog, which is a completely different job than guiding. Rob says, “My wheelchair weighs 400 pounds. I weigh 200 pounds. When I am weaving through Bayshore Shopping Centre (in Ottawa) when it’s packed, she is not controlling my chair.” Orchid’s vest indicates that she is an assistance dog, not a guide dog, but Rob adds, “People are just starting to realize that there are other types of service dogs out there”.

Rob tells the story of another example of how an assistance dog can help. “Once, when we were out for a walk, my wheelchair became stuck on the path. We were there for twenty minutes trying to dislodge and nobody came along. Finally, I called 9-1-1 and gave them my location. While talking to the dispatcher, she informed me that the officers could not find me. I gave Orchid the hand signal for help and she started barking. The dispatcher then told me that the officers could hear Orchid and to keep her barking. Orchid led the officers right to us and saved the day.”

Orchid loves the tasks assigned to her as an assistance dog, but she gets plenty of down time, play time, and the opportunity to just be a dog. She is very particular with her toys too. “I, my children, and their mother, as well as my mother have all bought her toys so she could fill her down time”, says Rob. “Out of the entire bag of toys she has, she plays with only one; or let me correct that, three. They are stuffed ducks that you can buy at the grocery store. Orchid is in love with her ducks. She sleeps with her head on them and occasionally brings me one or two in the morning, chewing on them until they quack. It’s kind of funny, checking up on me with her ‘ducky’”.

While Orchid provides mobility assistance for Rob, she has also helped him through some dark times dealing with his accident. Rob says, “Although she wasn’t trained for that, she can just tell when I am feeling off and always tries to comfort me.”

Orchid brings smiles to many, including out in the public too. Many comment on her behaviour on a city bus. Rob says, “It is not how well she listens to commands or the fact that she is an assistance dog. It is how she sits. She always lies in front of my chair, curled towards me, with her head on my foot. My sock might get a little wet from dog saliva, but it’s a small price to pay”.

I am grateful to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. I did not realize how grateful I would be to have Orchid. She is my assistance dog, my pet and my friend and we have grown to love each other. Thank you Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.


Congratulations to Joe Switzer of Ottawa, Ontario, winner of our 2017 Hockey Tickets Raffle. Thanks to a generous donor, we offered a pair of 100 level tickets to see the Ottawa Senators vs. New York Rangers, as well as free parking and pre-game buffet dinner at the Alumni Lounge. The draw was held on March 31, 2017, for the April 8 game. Joe had a great time. “I had an amazing time and we WON!!! The parking was perfect and the food for the pre-game was out of this world. They had everything there so I ate well LOL. The seats were nice and close, and I felt like I was part of the game.”

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Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind and other members of the International Guide Dog Federation celebrated International Guide Dog Day on April 26, 2017. We were pleased to have members of the local media join us for blindfold walks at our National Training Centre, including Kristy Cameron and Bill Carroll from 580 CFRA in Ottawa. Both managed to safely navigate an obstacle course with guide dog in training Griffin, and a little help from Tim Morin, Guide Dog Mobility Instructor.


A special thank you to the following businesses, which have donated goods or services to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind:

Bayer Healthcare Animal Health

Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd.

Elanco Animal Health Canada

Merck Canada Inc.

Nestlé Purina PetCare Canada


Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind would like to thank the many Ontario stores that have supported us through the sale of Nevada break-open tickets in the past year:

Big Bee Convenience Hamilton

City Convenience Hamilton

Corvette Smoke & Gift Scarborough

Dairy Way Convenience Oshawa

Happy Variety Kitchener

International News Stand Etobicoke, Hamilton

Mac’s Convenience Store Barrie, Brampton, Grand Valley, Kingston, London, Nepean, Peterborough, Smiths Falls, Trenton, Whitby, Windsor

Malton Variety Mississauga

Mrs. Coopers Convenience London

Pete’s Subs & Burgers Peterborough

Stop Variety Toronto

Sunrise Convenience Cambridge

Ultramar Corner Store Caledon


2018 Entertainment Memberships are packed with exclusive savings of up to 50% on everything you love to do. Dining, shopping, movies, attractions, activities…save all year round!

Both the Entertainment Book Membership and the Digital Savings Membership include a mobile app that allows you to show your phone to save in over 10,000 cities throughout the U.S. and Canada! Every purchase benefits Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. It is like getting over 100 editions online and on your phone!

Digital memberships are twenty dollars. Books range from $27 to $47, depending on city. Go to, select supporters, purchase from a fundraiser, and enter the name Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind.

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Client Profile – Danika Blackstock & Ullie

In the Canadian school system, it’s quite common for students to return to school in the fall and talk or write about what they did during the summer. You hear stories of family vacations, days at the beach, time with friends, part-time jobs, and many other adventures. It is only natural for children to become more independent as they grow older, and these experiences evolve.

For Danika Blackstock, the summer of 2012 might be remembered as the one when she became independent. At just 16 years old, Danika left her parents’ home in Cambridge, Ontario and spent four weeks at Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, where she trained with Ullie, a black Labrador retriever.

Danika was just two and a half years old when a stroke left her legally blind. At the time, her family lived in Ottawa. However, over the years, Danika has been through fourteen heart surgeries. When she was five, her family moved to Cambridge, Ontario, in order to be closer to Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto, where the best care was available.

As she aged, her parents accompanied her to most places, but like most teenagers, there was a growing need to be more independent. Danika started using a White Cane for mobility, although she says, “I didn’t like it. It was awkward. I always thought about a guide dog, and I used that as my motivation with the (White) Cane”. Danika first had to learn some orientation and mobility skills with a White Cane before she would be able to work with a guide dog.

At age 15, Danika and her parents paid a visit to an open house event at Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind’s National Training Centre. It gave Danika an opportunity to learn more about the organization and guide dogs, and tour the facility. “It felt like it would be okay to live there for a month”, she recalls. This visit, along with hearing good things from other people she knew with guide dogs, convinced her that a guide dog was in her future. The minimum age to apply for a guide dog from Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is 16, so the timing was perfect.

Danika was 16 when she was matched with the perfect dog for her. Ullie is very much like Danika; outgoing and curious. However, like Danika with her studies, Ullie also knows when it is time to work. Danika says, “She changes in harness. She is completely focused on her job. When the harness is off, she is excited and playful. But, she is always well-behaved and has good manners”. No different from most teenagers, Danika utilized social media to introduce her dog to people. Her friends met Ullie through Facebook photos before meeting her in person.

Danika and Ullie were the first guide dog team at her high school. With the help of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, , Danika was able to educate her Vice-Principal and Principal, who were both very eager, on the rules surrounding guide dog teams. Ullie attended two years of high school with Danika. “All my teachers loved her and she was able to guide me across the stage at graduation. I felt like this represented a symbol of a guiding me into a more independent life,” Danika recalls.

Currently, Danika is completing an Undergraduate degree at the University of Waterloo in Honours Social Development Studies with specializations in Social Policy and Social Action, Social Work, and Individual Well-Being. She is an active member on several committees, volunteers, and works full-time over the summer. Ullie accompanies Danika wherever she goes. They volunteer at a senior’s home together, travel independently to and from school and attend various meetings. Danika says, “Having a guide dog on such a large campus allows me to navigate buildings, people, street crossings and other obstacles. I have accomplished many things with Ullie: graduating high school; living in residence; traveling by plane independently; and so many other daily tasks. Ullie will be guiding me across the graduation stage once again next summer when I receive by Bachelor of Arts Degree.”

Danika adds, “Throughout the past five years, Ullie continues to amaze not only myself but my friends, family, peers, and professors. She is such a smart and sensitive dog who notices things very quickly. I often tell people she is my perfect match. She knows me better than most people do. Through becoming a team with Ullie, I feel like she has given me many gifts. She is my eyes and my best friend”.

“With Ullie, Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind has given me the ability and confidence to be independent, something that a person could never give me. It was scary trusting a dog at first, but now I trust her more than anyone else to keep me safe. I never imagined this small, energetic and beautiful dog would give me such freedom. Thank you Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind!”

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Kids Rock!

Children 12 and younger can participate in our colouring contest. Contest sheets are available on our website at Prizes are awarded every three months.

As part of their Empathy and Responsibility Assembly in April 2017, students at Morrisburg (Ontario) Public School welcomed two special guests. Bruce Wotherspoon and his guide dog, Perkins, joined them. Bruce described his experience of losing his sight as a young adult, and how his guide dogs have assisted him. Bruce enjoyed answering the students’ thoughtful questions. A donation dog was placed in the front hall of the school and students were invited to make donations throughout the month, raising $168.80!

Many hugs and smiles were featured at our 2017 Open Tour Day at Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind; a great chance for kids to meet our dogs, see our facility, and learn more about guide dogs.

Thank you to students who chose Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind for “Project Gives Back”, including Tira in Toronto, Ontario, who wrote to us.
“My name is Tira and I am a grade four student. When I saw your charity it touched my heart. I chose your charity because I love dogs and I wanted to feel for the blind as well. For my lesson, I got to explain what you do and how you help. I saw on everybody’s face that they wanted to help. When I am older, I will always support you. Sincerely, Tira.”


Obituaries and Guide Dog Memorial Tributes may be submitted to Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, 4120 Rideau Valley Drive North, PO Box 280, Manotick, ON, K4M 1A3; or by email to

Our People…

Joan Barclay-Drummond
Joan Barclay-Drummond, in her ninety-third year, passed away on August 18, 2017. Joan was “one of a kind”, generous and compassionate, but also strong-willed and independent with a wicked sense of humour. Joan was formerly on the Advisory Board and Board of Directors for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Joan will be greatly missed.

Iris Brazier
We are saddened by the passing of Iris Brazier in April 2017. Iris was a long-time volunteer, of 19 years, for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Many years ago, Iris would call upon other volunteers to attend events for the organization. She was a familiar sight working the reception desk at our annual UK Day Garden Party & Tea event. Iris was a pillar of the local community in Manotick, Ontario, involved with several charities and organizations. We offer our condolences to Iris’ entire family.

Gilles Duke
Gilles Duke was a client of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind. Gilles resided in the east end of Ottawa, and graduated with his assistance dog, Tab, in June 2014. We offer our condolences to all who knew Gilles/

Virginia Jaques
Virginia Jaques was a volunteer for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind for an incredible twenty-four years. She worked for over 35 years at Bell Canada, where she touched the lives of many and made many lifetime friends. She started volunteering for Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind’s Donation Dogs Program through the Telephone Pioneers of America service club in 1991. Virginia was always pleasant to work with and had a huge heart. We will miss her dearly.

Earl Paris
Earl Paris passed away on March 27, 2017. A former graduate of Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind, Earl died at the age of 80 in Montreal. His last guide dog was Xfor. We offer condolences to Denise and family.

Norm Walker
Norm Walker passed away in Brantford, Ontario, after a short illness, three weeks shy of age 94. Norm was a former President of the Telephone Pioneers of Canada in Brantford, and played a large role in supporting Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind’s Guider Donation Dog Program. Norm lived by three words: thoughts, words and deeds. Think good thoughts, say good words, and do good deeds. He lived by those three words.

Our Dogs…

With broken hearts, we report that Kirby passed away at 12 ½ years of age. He guided until he was eight and then retired to Perth where he was loved and enjoyed. Our “White Star” boy!
Maida Woodwark

Retired breeding dog “Millie”, or Miss Millie as we called her, passed away on April 28, 2017. Miss Millie was the mother of fifteen puppies in two litters, before she was retired. Jack and I have felt so blessed to have her in our lives and experiencing new life as each litter came along. We truly feel she has fulfilled her destiny for both her life and the guide dog program. Her gentle nature and joy for life was infectious, and she always made us smile. Millie will always hold a very special place in our hearts, and will be truly missed
Donna and Jack Fulton

Pike was my second guide dog. We graduated in May 2007. He was an exceptional guide dog and remained a dedicated companion and friend in his retirement years. Pike passed away in September 2017. He will be loved and remembered forever. Rest in peace Admiral Pike.
Ian Clark

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Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind has a gift shop. In each newsletter, we highlight six items available for purchase.

This time, we feature our latest t-shirt. It is a hand and paw design featured over top of our logo with a Canada 150 logo. The t-shirts are charcoal grey and range in sizes from small to XXL. T-shirts are twenty dollars each.

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind sells custom engraved dog tags. You choose the engraving of up to four lines on each tag. These are great in case your dog or other pet gets away from you. Pet tags are six dollars and come in multiple colours.

Our 2017 Christmas Cards featuring a black lab in front of Christmas ornaments. Packages are sold in cards of ten with envelopes for twelve dollars.

Our tote bags are perfect for shopping and great for the environment. Re-use them every time. Beige tote bags feature a yellow Lab puppy in a basket on the front. They are twenty dollars.

Our sweatshirts are navy blue and comes in sizes small to XXL. They are solid in colour with our logo in white on the left breast. Sweatshirts at thirty dollars.

Pawtectors dog boots are perfect to protect the paws of any pooch in the winter. Boots come in sizes medium and large only. They sell for twenty dollars.

Please note that the prices for all of these items, as stated in this newsletter, include taxes. Shipping and handling is an additional fifteen percent.

For any of our gift items, you can print the order form from the graphics version of our newsletter; order online at in our gift shop; or phone us at (613) 692-7777.

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Here is our full contact information:

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind
4120 Rideau Valley Drive North
PO Box 280
Manotick, Ontario K4M 1A3
Telephone (613) 692-7777
Fax (613) 692-0650
Web site

Canadian Guide Dogs for the Blind is Canadian registered charity number 10684 6819 RR0001.

This concludes Side by Side, the 2017 Fall Winter edition, Volume 32, Number 2.