A C-TRAN employee will spend the next year raising a guide dog puppy in training in partnership with Guide Dogs for the Blind. Veronica Marti, C-TRAN’s lead travel trainer, began working with Jamboree, a 10-week-old black lab, earlier this month.
As a Guide Dogs for the Blind puppy raiser, Marti will teach Jamboree good manners and basic obedience. She’ll teach him proper positioning in various scenarios. She’ll use verbal cues and hand signals and other tools that Guide Dogs for the Blind commonly uses. After about a year, Jamboree will return to Guide Dogs for the Blind to complete his training, before hopefully graduating from the program to be paired with his long-term human partner as a full-fledged guide dog.
Jamboree will be with Marti in the C-TRAN office most days as he continues his training, as well as out on the bus system. As a travel trainer, Marti works with clients to help them learn how to use public transportation. The unique partnership will give Jamboree a leg up in his training, allowing him to gain an early familiarity with buses and public transit — which many disabled communities rely on for their transportation needs.
Also helping is Sindy Quitugua, C-TRAN’s Vanpool Coordinator and Marti’s backup for puppy training. Both Quitugua and Marti went through their own preparation with Guide Dogs for the Blind before Jamboree arrived.
Guide Dogs for the Blind is a nonprofit organization that pairs individuals with guide dogs across the U.S. and Canada. The organization includes a large network of instructors, training facilities and volunteers that supports blind and low-vision people with its guide dog program. The organization also has a strong presence in the region, with its Pacific Northwest campus in Boring, Ore.