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Guide Dogs NSW pup-up café, a pawsome immersive experience!

Guide Dogs NSW inaugural pup-up café in Sydney’s CBD

On Saturday 19th November, only just under 300 guests had the chance to dine, pat puppies, pose in a pooch-themed photo booth and even play in a plushie dog toy ball pit - all in the name of supporting those living with low vision or blindness.

Catered by The Blind Chef, owned by Guide Dogs NSW/ACT Client Craig Shanahan, the immersive Guide Dogs event afforded guests a unique dining experience, whilst providing the opportunity to hear from people in the low vision and blind community - learning about their day-to-day lives and the challenges they can face. 

Bride-to-be Ash, who was at the event to celebrate her Bachelorette party said: “I love Labradors and follow Guide Dogs on social media so when I saw this pop-up on the same day as my bachelorette party, I just knew it was meant to be. It’s the most unique and perfect start to the day, and to be supporting a charity too.”

From left to right: Katie, Ash, Georgia and Louise
It takes over two years and costs $50,000 to breed, raise and train each Guide Dog Puppy, including the pups at the café - and guests had the opportunity to hear about this process as well as speak to Guide Dogs Handlers, Clients and staff.

 "We had nearly 300 people through the doors of our first ever Guide Dogs café, and loved seeing the community interact with our dogs, volunteers and Clients - as well as getting those all-important puppy cuddles in." said Ryan Jones, Guide Dogs Mobility Instructor.

We're incredibly grateful to Charter Hall for the space, Craig Shanahan from The Blind Chef Cafe and Dessert Bar for the catering, Krispy Kreme for donating donuts, and all our staff and volunteers who showed up on the day to make everything happen. 

From left to right:
Jewel, Lorraine, Shannon
As ever, we remain grateful to our beautiful dogs who perform a variety of vital roles in our community, from working as Therapy Dogs to supporting a person with blindness or low vision. 

If you'd like to meet some of our dogs we have events coming up in Canberra, Newcastle and Wollongong, and you can follow us on social media for regular event updates."

Café attendee, Shannon: “I see Guide Dogs out in the community but this was a great opportunity to find out more about what they do - I didn’t know some them work as therapy dogs in courts!”

Follow Guide Dogs Australia on Facebook at or @guidedogsaustralia on Instagram. 

MEDIA RELEASE, 21st November 2022

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