Painted Guide Dogs have taken up residence in shops, restaurants, and shopping malls in Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland as part of the Paws for Purpose interactive art exhibition and auction to raise funds and awareness for Blind Low Vision NZ Guide Dog Services.
Around 40 artists from across Aotearoa, including Dick Frizzell, Ian Mune, Tim Christie, Shane Walker, Anna Leyland, Francis Hooper, Dame Denise L’Estrange-Corbet have collaborated with Blind Low Vision NZ to help raise funds to have more guides dogs. Guide dogs help support people who are blind, deafblind, or have low vision, to be independent and live life without limits. The artists’ brief was simply to give a new LEASH on life to the old Blind Low Vision NZ Donations Dogs!
The Puppy Dog Trail is free for all to view, and those people not in Auckland can participate in the online bidding here, before the final auction on 23 March at Park Hyatt.
Blind Low Vision NZ’s Guide Dog Puppy Appeal March 2023 will raise money to build a new and fit for purpose kennel for guide dogs in training. Blind Low Vision NZ is the only organisation who train and breed guide dogs for New Zealanders who are blind, deafblind, or have low vision.
A guide dog gives freedom, independence, and confidence to a New Zealander with vision loss. There are currently 180,000 New Zealanders who are blind, deafblind or have low vision. It’s estimated that due to the ageing population, this number will increase to 225,000 by 2028.
Each year, Blind Low Vision NZ breed around 100 potential guide dogs, of which around 40 will graduate. However, each year they also have a waiting list of up to 50 New Zealanders waiting for a guide dog to support them to live independent lives. The current waiting time to receive a guide dog is around two years. The anticipated increased demand over the coming years will extend the waiting time unless more dogs can be successfully trained as guide dogs.