Older woman sits at desk and smiles at the camera
Blue banner with two paws

When Jeanette Nazario’s son died while deployed to South Korea, it left a hole in her heart. Then one day, a four-legged angel named Bruno arrived to help Jeanette through the hard days. Without words, this Gold Star Dog always knows exactly what to say—on this episode of our Emmy Award-winning series, Dogs of Destiny.

Click here for descriptive video for the visually impaired: https://vimeo.com/713033391/432724bb60

This episode of Dogs of Destiny is brought to you with grateful recognition Subaru Lakeland, Tampa, and Orlando for their generous partnership.

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How do our dogs get the right start? With volunteer puppy raisers just like you! And now with our new Puppy Starter program, you can get all the puppy goodness and devote just weeks instead of months.

So which program is right for you—Puppy Raiser or Puppy Starter? Learn more at https://www.guidedogs.org/get-involved/raise-a-puppy/

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Charles Lyon of Summerville, South Carolina recently graduated from our guide dog program with his new best friend, MC. Charles is ready to suggest that we take a cue from Disney and revamp our school motto. According to him, Disneyland may be “The happiest place on Earth” and the Magic Kingdom “The most magical place on Earth,” but Southeastern Guide Dogs deserves the best title of all: “The greatest place in the Universe.” ...

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This looks like a good place for a snooze 💤

Today's #SundaySnuggles is brought to you by Manatee Healthcare Foundation, one of our Independence level Walkathon 2022 sponsors.

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Tune in to ABC World News Tonight at 6:30 EST / 5:30 CST for a 💕 story about one of our own, Army veteran Stefanie Marvin-Miller and her service dog Leland. 👀 TONIGHT! on ABC 📺.

Stefanie just graduated from Middle Tennessee State University, and she credits Leland for her success. “I never, not for one second, allowed myself to dream of this possibility for myself before I had Leland’s leash in my hands. When I needed help during the long nights of homework and stressful tests, all I had to do was reach out my hand and I found his paw. He’s my best buddy, and there isn’t anyone on this planet that I’d want more by my side to cross that graduation stage. He’s earned it as much as I have.”

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Labradors are large-breed dogs—so how do guide and service dogs fit under the seat on an airplane? (Hint: puppy raisers, your job is important here.) Angelo, a guide dog in training, will demonstrate for us today at 1:00 p.m. on Facebook LIVE. See you then! ...

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Our puppy raisers give themselves to a smart yet helpless puppy, grow it up, and train it well for months on end. Then they say goodbye, shed real tears, and many do it all over again. And again.

That’s what we call commitment, and it is our privilege to honor them through our Puppy Raiser Hall of Fame. These superheroes have raised ten or more puppies! We recognized these individuals for their sacrifice of time, talent, resources, and the part of their heart that they leave with each puppy.

Click here to check out our puppy raisers hall of fame at https://docs.google.com/document/d/11dtAn8-g-WAMCtvRhidtPs-U5bHH_QqAnbRInLmaTmw/edit?usp=sharing

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Ed Burton served as a Navy diver and then an operating engineer mechanic, working on various types of boilers and engines. While in Vietnam, he suffered an unidentified eye inflammation that caused optic nerve damage and vision loss in both eyes. But with some sight remaining on his right side, he was able to complete 28 years of active duty. Ironically, Ed was trained to dive with blacked-out glasses so that everything appeared in darkness. This training helped, as the eye inflammation and blindness worsened over time.

Both Ed’s VA counselor and his wife encouraged him to get a guide dog, but he wavered until 2003 when he was hit by a car while crossing the street. Ed was paired with his first dog, Van, in 2005, and asked himself ruefully, “Why didn’t I do this 10 years earlier?” After Van came Sammy, who is now retired. Ed fell instantly in love with his new successor guide dog, Sully—a match that’s both physically and emotionally ideal. “Sully is a little high-packed energy gal,” Ed notes, calling this petite yet powerful girl his “Alfa Romeo sports car.”

Ed and Sully will use public transportation together and make trips to the supermarket without assistance. They’ll also go sailing, something the old sailor never learned to do until after the Navy!

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Joe Maguire has worn many hats, from Navy SEAL to vice admiral to Director of National Counterterrorism. He understands the price of freedom and that there are no unwounded soldiers.

Our extraordinary dogs can help heal those wounds. And Joe spreads this hope to veterans with help from his four-legged sidekick, Darley—in the latest episode of our Emmy Award-winning series, Dogs of Destiny.

This episode of Dogs of Destiny is brought to you with grateful recognition Brandon Old Town Chapter Harley Owners Group for their generous partnership.

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In honor of National Military Appreciation Month, here’s a salute to the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces—and the families standing behind them. We’re here for veterans, and so are our dogs. Because of people like you, we can provide all of our dogs, training, and alumni support services at no cost, including:

Guide Dogs – offering independence and freedom to visually impaired people, including veterans, restoring confidence and dignity.

Service Dogs – helping restore a sense of wellbeing to veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and other disabilities.

Facility Therapy Dogs – providing therapeutic comfort to veterans and families being treated in military medical facilities or working in high-stress military environments across the nation.

Emotional Support Dogs – offering peace of mind and companionship to veterans as they help mitigate chronic stress, anxiety, depression, or other limitations.

Gold Star Family Dogs – giving the gift of comforting friendship to families who have lost a loved one in service to the nation.

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Please join us in congratulating the exceptional people and dogs who have recently graduated from Southeastern Guide Dogs. In this issue of Side by Side, we celebrate their new leash on life. Take a look at these inspiring photos, quotes, and stories of hope—made possible because of friends like you. Read Side by Side at https://www.guidedogs.org/side-by-side/ ...

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It takes two words to tell someone you appreciate them. Telling an entire school of teachers—now that takes a room full of puppies.

Yesterday, teachers and staff at Bevis Elementary School were surprised with “Puppy Palooza,” an opportunity to hold, hug, and play with local guide-dog-in-training puppies as a way to say thank you for their hard work and dedication throughout the school year.

Join us in saying thank you to all of the teachers out there and let them know they are appreciated!

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SO. MUCH. FUN! Here’s a video recap of our 2022 Walkathon season.

Thanks again to all of you for coming out to our in-person events, sharing your photos online and donating so generously to support our pups.

Our 2022 goal is to raise $1 million dollars—and we’re fundraising throughout May and June. Your support changes lives! Click here to donate and make a difference www.guidedogswalkathon.org

Thanks again to our Presenting Sponsor, Fromm Family Foods, and our Signature Sponsors, Elanco and Subaru of America, Inc.. #dogsmakingadifference #SEGuideDogs #NatWalkDay2022

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“The Force is strong with this one.”

Obi wants to wish everyone a Happy #StarWarsDay on this special May the Fourth!

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The definition of a dapper little dude 🐾 ...

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We interrupt your regularly scheduled #SundaySnuggles for a #SundaySmiles from these two cheesing pups!

Today's #SundaySnuggles is brought to you by Dog Perfect, one of our Independence level Walkathon 2022 sponsors.

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Five-year-old James lives with low vision and nystagmus—involuntary eye movements—caused by a glioma, or tumor that presses on his optic nerve. Despite a lifetime of chemotherapy and other treatments that began when he was only three months, this preschooler is a bright, funny, active, and inquisitive fellow who loves music and plays the violin.

With their doctor’s recommendation, a loving, four-legged Kids Companion Dog named Cherman has now joined the family. This easygoing dog will offer James extra support and show him what it’s like to care for a future guide dog. “Cherman is sweet and social and wants to sit with the kids all the time,” says James’ mother, Eva. They play fetch together, pray together, and have a special pillow hideout in a closet just for their private “reading club.”

James is a very active boy who tries hard to keep up with his older sister, brother, and two pet dogs. They hike and travel for adventures, and with Cherman by his side, James is learning to navigate all kinds of terrain. “Cherman has been a very bright spot for us,” Eva adds. “He’s just a precious addition to our family. I feel like he’s a special dog, and I feel very grateful that we have him.”


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There’s still time to triple your impact, but only until noon today!

The 24-hour #GivingChallenge2022 is almost over, and you still have a chance to triple your donation. Our magnificent dogs restore confidence, freedom, dignity, and hope, and you transform lives with your kindness. People with vision loss, veterans with disabilities, and children with significant challenges are counting on you!

Don’t miss this chance to triple your gift by joining the Giving Challenge.

Get ready, get set, and give hope—right now!


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As #NationalVolunteerAppreciationWeek comes to an end, we would like to take a moment to celebrate our volunteers. Our volunteers are the foundation of Southeastern Guide Dogs, and we are thankful for each and every one of them. Please join us in saying thanks for all they do 🐾

Today's #SundaySnuggles is brought to you by Spirion, LLC, one of our Independence level Walkathon 2022 sponsors.

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Navy veteran Matthew Fugett dreaded the night. Sleep eluded him. Nightmares taunted him. Then he got a “Wake-Up Call” from a tiny but mighty service dog named Smokey.

“It was pretty much like a light switch,” recalls Matthew. “I went to bed and slept like a normal human being for the first time in years.” See how Smokey became his dream come true in the latest episode of our Emmy Award-winning series, Dogs of Destiny.

Click here for descriptive video for the visually impaired: https://vimeo.com/701407950/85a9e532c9

This episode of Dogs of Destiny is brought to you with grateful recognition of Tito’s Handmade Vodka for their generous partnership.

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