Harness Up! Blog
HarnessUp! is the official newsletter of the National Association of Guide Dog Users (NAGDU). Harness Up! contains information of interest to guide dog users and others associated with the guide dog movement and the organized blind. Unlike many other publications on the subject of guide dogs and their use, articles appearing in Harness Up! are written from the standpoint of guide dog users themselves. Most other literature about guide dogs is published by guide dog training programs, which promote their particular programs through their publications. Well-known books on the subject have been written by individual guide dog users and by others interested in the guide dog movement. Few, if any, such publications portray the efforts of guide dog users working together through organizations such as the National Association of Guide Dog Users and the National Federation of the Blind.
- why some blind people decide to use a guide dog for independent travel
- what training programs are available for teaching dogs the art of guiding their blind handlers and teaching blind people how to work successfully with their dogs to realize the maximum benefit from them.
Other topics include
- the human/animal bond and the roll it plays in shaping effective guide dog teams
- information on the care, feeding, and veterinary care of guide dogs
- stress management
- issues related to the retirement of a beloved guide
- retraining with a replacement guide
- Harness Up! also contains information about the activities of the National Association of Guide Dog Users and the National Federation of the Blind.
A Brief History
Harness Up! began life in the late 1980s as the Newsletter of the Guide Dog Users Committee of the National Federation of the Blind of New York State. It was offered in print, and on audio cassette and was published biennially as it is today. It became the official newsletter of the National Association of Guide Dog Users in the early 1990s. It was one of the first NFB-related publications to be offered in an electronic Braille format via the International Electronic Braille Library (IEBL.) With the launch of NAGDU’s web site, readers were able to read and/or download ASCII Text or electronic Braille editions of Harness Up! from the site. Complete ASCII and electronic Braille editions of Harness Up! can be downloaded by selecting the appropriate links below. You will be able to download individual issues in either medium from their respective pages. You can select the particular issue and the medium in which you want to read it from the table below.
Those who become members of NAGDU are eligible to receive Harness Up! in print or on audio cassette. It is our hope that you will find the information in this newsletter provocative and of assistance to you.
Submissions can be sent in either Word or text formats to
Guide Dog Users’ Bill of Rights
Guide Dog Users’ Bill Of Rights
Fidelco Responds to Bill of Rights
The following is a transcript of prepared comments to the National Association of Guide Dog Users Bill of Rights. The full text of the Guide Dog Users’ Bill of Rights is contained below. These comments were delivered by Julie Unwinn, Chief Operating Officer of the Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation Inc., to the membership of NAGDU on July 3, 2013. They are a precise transcription and have not been modified or edited.
NAGDU Responds to Petition to Ban Online Sale of Service Animal Gear
A petition is being circulated by Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) and seems to be supported by other service animal training programs to ban the online sale of service animal gear. The following response is the official position of the National Association of Guide dog Users (NAGDU) concerning this effort.
Civil Complaint Filed Against Hotel
In my workshops and discussions concerning the legal rights and responsibilities of guide and service dog users, I always share the fact that the Americans with Disabilities Act not only protects the interests of disabled individuals, but also those of the nondisabled who are a party to discrimination by association.
BOARDS OF EDUCATION IMPLEMENT ILLEGAL POLICIES REGARDING THE USE OF SERVICE ANIMALS
MCMINN AND BLOUNT COUNTIES’ BOARDS OF EDUCATION IMPLEMENT ILLEGAL POLICIES REGARDING THE USE OF SERVICE ANIMALS—TENNESSEE SCHOOL BOARDS ASSOCIATION NEGLECTS TO PUSH FOR CHANGE
School District to Modify Service Animal Policies and Pay Fines
As a advocate for guide dog users and one who is currently working to change the policies of several school districts and colleges with oppressive policies concerning service animals, I found this settlement very encouraging. I hope you will feel the same!
Marion Gwizdala, President
National Association of guide dog Users