Pathfinder Guide Dog Programme
 Partnering blind people to independence
 established 2003
We believe that natural and healthy feeding is the best for our dogs.  

We feed a raw diet as much as possible, bearing in mind that our clients have to be able to manage the requirements also. Dogs are fed fresh tripe, mince, chicken wings, turkey necks, ox cheek and offal as long as it’s not pork. We also compliment with ‘Natural Dog Food Company’ dry biscuit which is made from quality raw ingredients. This food is the first truly balanced complete diet, and the first 100% natural dog food on the market. We also feed raw meaty bones regularly to promote healthy teeth and gums.

We DO NOT use or recommend any dog food that contains Ethoxyquin, BHT, BHA or EC (or EEC) Permitted Preservatives, therefore taking care in what training treats and other treats we use.

Currently we have to purchase our pups until our own breeding scheme is established.  Health is a vital component for our dogs, not only to the dogs’ longevity of work as guides, but also to promote responsibility and support the German Shepherd Dogs health screening schemes.

We look for puppies’ parents to have very good hip and elbow scores and be haemophilia tested - Haemophilia ‘A’ is a bleeding disorder and  its is normally only MALES that are afflicted. We ensure there is no epilepsy in bloodlines or pancreatic issues, and now look to breeders who are using the recently introduced Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) test.  This is a progressive spinal cord disease causing weakness in the hind limbs.

All our pups receive their puppy vaccines and we then ‘titre’ test at the age of 18months, then at 18month intervals. This is where bloods are taken to determine level of immunity to a certain disease/virus.  If the antibody level protection is low, we can then ‘booster’ for one particular disease, rather than the dog receiving ‘unnecessarily’ the whole lot again as routine. Lots of credible studies have shown that immunity lasts for years, and there is increasing evidence of vaccine damage ‘Vaccinosis’, which is the term used to describe chronic conditions resulting in damage due to over vaccinating dogs.

As much as possible we try to use ‘natures medicine’ to treat our dogs, to prevent them being pumped full of unnecessary chemicals, which sadly is becoming a matter of routine with some vets. However, it goes without saying, if our dogs need veterinary treatment – they get it.