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3,500 toys gifted to Guide Dog puppies

Chewing for a playful cause: 3,500 toys gifted to Guide Dog puppies 

Guide Dogs Australia has received a donation of more than 3,500 new toys so puppies in training can enjoy some well-earned puppy play in their downtime.

The donation drive run by PETstock’s charity arm, PETstock Assist, saw a KONG donated for every KONG purchased in-store during the month of April.

PETstock Charity Coordinator, Jessica Guilfoyle, says initiatives like this allow pet parents to support worthy causes close to their hearts.

“It takes two years and more than $50,000 to breed, raise, train and match a suitable Guide Dog with a person living with low vision. Guide Dogs Australia is a charity we’ve supported for a long time, they do incredible work and need all the support they can get, which is why we’re thrilled to make such a significant donation thanks to our long-time partner, KONG,” she says.

The donation equating to more than $123,000 is all thanks to pet parents Australia-wide supporting participating PETstock stores and will see thousands of Guide Dog puppies in training get a shiny new toy. 

Guide Dog puppy in training taking a quick nap after some fun playtime with his KONG Wubba
Guide Dogs Australia National Corporate Partnerships Manager, Caroline Lee, says it’s not all work and training for Guide Dog puppies.

“Just like all puppies, play is a crucial part of our dogs’ development,” she says.

“Studies show that dogs who don’t engage in a lot of play suffer from behavioural issues such as anxiety and aggression, which is why it’s so important our puppies have lots of toys and playtime in addition to learning their important job.

“Generous donations like this are what make our work possible and we’re incredibly thankful to PETstock, KONG and their customers.”

About Guide Dog Training

  • Guide Dog Puppies leave their parents at the age of two months. They spend the first year of their lives with a volunteer puppy raiser learning basic obedience and getting used to different environments: sounds, other dogs and people.
  • Assessment begins at 14 months. If dogs pass this assessment they enter into a five-month intensive training program and train to become a fully-fledged working Guide Dog.
  • Guide Dogs do get to enjoy some down time! When a handler is not working their Guide Dog they will take off the dog's harness and allow the dog to relax. 
  • Many Guide Dogs assume more of a family pet role once they are home and finished work for the day. 
  • Guide Dogs usually stay with their families or the family of their puppy raiser, after they retire. However, in the rare cases that this is not possible a rehoming officer will place retiring guides into specialist homes. 
For more information on the training process, raising funds, sponsoring a pup through Puppy Pals or Puppy Sponsorship, or volunteering, please visit

A Guide Dog in training enjoying its new toy KONG Classic toy

Image credits (all): Guide Dogs Australia.

MEDIA RELEASE, 19th July 2019

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