MIRA Guide Dog Training

Dylan Boggs, 15 (left), and Julia LaGrand, 11 get acquainted with dogs Choucas and Diabolo as Eric St-Pierre and Julie Parisien look on. The MIRA Foundation, which was founded by Mr. St-Pierre, is dedicated to helping disabled individuals by teaming them with dogs bred and fully trained to respond to their adaptation and rehabilitation needs.

Two young candidates for guide dogs spent the weekend in Southern Pines trying their hand at leading these highly-trained animals. Sponsored by MIRA Foundation USA, the two-day evaluation includes a comprehensive review of each student’s eligibility based on their readiness, orientation and mobility skills.

Dylan Boggs is an 8th grade student at Sandhills Theater Arts Renaissance School [STARS] in Vass. He is legally blind but does have some very limited vision. His mother, Jennifer Sanchez, said they started the application process to receive a MIRA guide dog two years ago. The family moved to Pinehurst in September but had been commuting with Dylan to STARS for two years, as she said the smaller school provides a safe and comfortable educational environment for him.

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