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The Guide Horse Foundation
Guide Horse Foundation

A non-profit charity dedicated to providing free guides for visually impaired individuals.

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Patricia Cornwell with Trip, one of the horses she donated to the guide Horse Foundation

Patricia Cornwell with Trip

Don and Janet Burleson - Copyright 2000 by Lisa Carpenter

Copyright © 2000 by Lisa Carpenter

Dan with Cuddles - Copyright (c) 2001 by Cathleen MacDonald
Copyright © 2001 by Cathleen MacDonald

Cuddles in Harness - Copyright (c) 2001 by Cathleen MacDonald

Copyright © 2001 by Cathleen MacDonald

Don and Janet with Trip and Ras

Copyright © 2000 by Lisa Carpenter

Cuddles on the first flight of a horse on a commercial flight

Copyright © 2001 by Erik Lesser
The worlds first horse to fly in the passenger cabin

Cuddles guiding Dan Shaw

Copyright © 2001 by Erik Lesser

Cuddles at Lunch

Copyright © 2001 by Erik Lesser

Carroll Center helps Guide Horse User

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The Carroll Center for the Blind is a private non-profit organization that provides training programs and services to persons who are visually impaired or legally blind. The Center is located in Newton, MA and welcomes clientele of all ages.

Founded in 1936, The Carroll Center gained international recognition in 1954 when it established the first campus-based rehabilitation program for newly blinded adults. This program became a nationwide model of modern day rehabilitation, creating new possibilities for visually impaired and blind persons to realize their personal and vocational aspirations.

Today, the Carroll Center, with a staff of trained professionals specializing in vision impairments, offers a vast array of services for children, working-age adults and seniors who are blind or visually impaired. Services are available at the campus or in the community and include:
  • Independent Living Skills
  • Computer Training
  • Educational Services
  • Employment Services
  • Low Vision Rehabilitation
  • Community Orientation and Mobility Training
  • Outdoor Enrichment Program
  • Professional Development
  • International Training Program

And indeed a Carroll Center graduate was the ideal subject to try using a guide horse. Dan Shaw had excellent mobility and Orientation skills, largely due to the extensive training he received at the prestigious Carroll Center for the Blind in Massachusetts. There Dan wore occluded glasses to simulate total blindness while he learned to operate power tools, cook and travel through the city in total darkness. The marvelous program at the Carroll Center enables a blind student to learn to truly live an independent life style as Dan went on to prove time and again.

In his early 40s when he had only 5% vision left, Dan Shaw realized he needed to prepare for a life of darkness. He attended the Carroll Center for the Blind near Boston, where he quickly began to read Braille so well that after graduation he began teaching Braille to sighted children “so they could relate to what it’s like to be a blind kid in school.”

At the Carroll Center Dan wearing occluded glasses Dan prepared for the day his vision would be completely gone. He learned to use Orientation and Mobility skills to travel in unfamiliar territory. They even taught him how to cook for himself and maintain an independent daily life style. And most important to Dan he learned how to work with his hands using power tools without relying on sight so he could continue to use tools for building and continue working outdoors. Dan gained the skill that enabled him to mow a familiar lawn and help with basic construction and wood working. He even helped mend the overhang on our stable last year. Much to our amazement as long as he knew where everything was he could help hang boards and hold them up for someone to nail up.

Thanks to his extensive Orientation and Mobility training Dan functions successfully in day to day living.

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Helping Hooves

The Guide Horse Foundation Training Program to Train  Miniature Horses  as Guide Animals for the Blind

Janet Burleson
Retail Price $34.95

Order this book now and get 30% off the retail price!

Only $19.95

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Read the compelling story of the first miniature horse trained to work as a guide horse. Learn the exciting methods used to prepare the tiny horses to perform these amazing services.


All author royalties are being donated to help support the Guide Horse Foundation.




  • Janet Burleson is one of the world's pioneering horse trainers – Practical Horseman Magazine

  • Seeing is believing – USA Today

  • Janet and Don Burleson are  . . . Angels – People Magazine

  • How wonderful that Janet and Don Burleson have initiated this valuable experimental program teaming miniature horses with blind people – Newsweek

  • Miniature ponies are leading the way for the blind – ABC News

  • Guide Horses  . . . are as small and disciplined as Guide Dogs – TIME Magazine

  • Extraordinary ABC 20/20

  • It is often the little things that win our hearts and minds – ABC News

  • The Burleson’s are . . . using horse sense to Guide Boston Globe

  • Twinkie proved that miniature horses could fill the role, and fill it well – VetCentric Magazine

  • An Intriguing Program - Discovery Channel






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Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001,2002,2003 by the Guide Horse Foundation Inc. 

Guide Horse ® is a registered trademark of the Guide Horse Foundation Inc.

The Guide Horse Foundation has the utmost respect for The Seeing Eye® and their seventy-two years of outstanding work with assistance animals for the blind. Please note that The Guide Horse Foundation is not affiliated with or sanctioned by the Seeing-Eye® or any of the Guide Dog training organizations. Seeing-Eye® is a registered trademark of the Seeing-Eye, Inc.

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