BC & Alberta Guide Dogs breeds, raises and professionally trains Guide Dogs for individuals who are blind/visually-impaired, and Autism Support Dogs for children with moderate to profound autism aged 3-10 and their families. It takes two years and upwards of $35,000 to produce one certified dog, provided free of charge to the recipient.
The organization was founded in 1996 as BC Guide Dog Services and began professionally training Guide Dogs for blind/visually-impaired British Columbians, becoming fully accredited members of the International Guide Dog Federation in 2001.
In 2002, the organization expanded into Alberta and in 2008, launched its sister charity, Autism Support Dogs in partnership with the Victor and Anna Kern Foundation, the Vandekerkhove Family Foundation, the Diamond Foundation, and Variety–The Children’s Charity.
In 2014, the two charities amalgamated to form one organization, collectively known as BC & Alberta Guide Dogs. Alberta Guide Dogs and Autism Support Dogs are divisions of BC & Alberta Guide Dogs. BC & Alberta Guide Dogs relies on the generosity of donors to serve individuals and families living in British Columbia and Alberta.
Our Board of Directors, staff, and volunteers are dedicated to improving the availability of service of Guide Dogs and Autism Support Dogs, including breeding, raising and training more dogs and continuing to give care to dogs that are currently with human partners.
On June 28, 1996, British Columbia Guide Dog Services was incorporated as a registered charity, becoming British Columbia’s first guide dog school, and was registered in British Columbia as an extra-provincial society under the Society Act on August 8, 1996.
In 2001, B.C. Guide Dog Services became a member of the International Guide Dog Federation, an international accrediting body.
In 2002, B.C. Guide Dog Services registered the title Alberta Guide Dog Services to provide also provide its services to citizens of Alberta.
On May 30, 2002, British Columbia Guide Dogs was registered as an extra-provincial corporation in Alberta.
In December 2008, British Columbia Guide Dogs founded Autism Support Dogs, its sister charity and became members of Assistance Dogs International (ADI).
In the fall of 2014, BC Guide Dogs and Autism Support Dogs amalgamated to form one organization, collectively known as BC & Alberta Guide Dogs. Alberta Guide Dogs and Autism Support Dogs are divisions of BC Guide Dogs.