The Value of Puppy Raisers' Assessments of Potential Guide Dogs' Behavioral Tendencies and Ability to Graduate

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Using logistic regression analysis, we examined the use of questionnaires to evaluate variables that predict successful completion of a guide dog training program. The model compared the questionnaire responses from individual puppy raisers (PRs) with their dog's success in the guide dog training program at Guide Dogs NSW/ACT (New South Wales/Australian Capital Territory). Variables tested were the number and outcome of dogs previously raised, the household structure, duration of time spent alone, provisions made for the dog whilst alone, the number and type of other household pets, type and duration of training undertaken, behavioral responses to a number of stimuli as well as to other dogs and people, the frequency of exercise and socialization activities, the puppy raisers' plans to raise another pup, any medical problems, and their predictions about their dog's chances of success and the most likely causes for its failure. Our findings show that PRs' predictions of success and the number of dogs in the household were the most important predictors of success in the Guide Dogs NSW/ACT training program.