Sailor and Delta Gamma
Sailor is a Guide Dog in Training, sponsored by Delta Gamma and trained by Sami. The Delta Gamma chapter at Texas Tech University decided to sponsor Sailor because Delta Gamma’s national philanthropy is Service for Sight. Their foundation’s mission is to promote sight preservation and assistance to those who are blind or visually impaired. They felt that donating $5,000 to Guide Dogs for the Blind to help with the costs of breeding, whelping, socializing and veterinary care for a guide dog puppy was the perfect way to support this mission. With this sponsorship, Guide Dogs for the Blind gave their chapter the opportunity to name the puppy.
♡ What was the inspiration behind the name?
His nautical name was inspired by Delta Gamma’s symbol, the anchor, which has a deep meaning that goes back to the founding members. Our founders choose the first membership badge to be an “H” signifying hope and in 1877, the Delta Gamma badge was changed to the age-old symbol of hope, the anchor. This anchor has brought hope and strength to all members and that is exactly what we want our little Sailor to bring to his handler as their guide dog.
♡ How old is Sailor now?
Little Sailor is now 5 months old and weighs around 50 pounds (he isn’t so little anymore lol).
♡ What are Sailor’s favorite things to do? What kinds of things do you teach him to prepare him for being a Guide Dog?
Sailor’s favorite actives right now is to train and play with his toys. While I am raising Sailor, I teach him basic commands, train him to have impeccable manners and socialize him in public places to prepare him for formal guide dog training at Guide Dogs for the Blind. He will go to formal training when he is around 14-18 months old where he will be taught by a professional guide dog mobility instructor to safely guide someone around obstacles and avoid distractions. Guide dogs are also trained in “intelligence disobedience”: if they are given an unsafe cue from their handler, they are taught to disobey it (for example: refusing to step out into the street when there is oncoming traffic). In addition, they will make sure he possess an eagerness to please and a willingness to work. They make sure all guide dogs love what they do!
♡ What does FriendshipCollar mean to you?
To me, FriendshipCollar means that the members of Delta Gamma can be connected to this special puppy not only by matching, but with all of us wearing anchors together, we are to constantly reminded of the hope we have to make a difference in someone else’s life.
♡ Was it love at first sight?
From the moment I first met Sailor I fell in love. He had the biggest paws and hypnotizing puppy eyes. Since then, he has taught me compassion and understanding, while connecting hundreds of women who are passionate about service for sight. He has grown into a confident puppy who is always ready for adventure!
Although little Sailor will only be in our lives for a little while, he is all of best friend because he is loving and watching him learn and grow brings us so much joy! We are so happy to be a small part of Sailor’s journey.