Wednesday 24th April was National Guide Dog Day!

While Nicky from our picture book Nicky and Candy’s Street doesn’t have a guide dog, she may well do one day.

So we thought we’d take this opportunity to show these helpful pawfessional good boys and girls some love by sharing three ways we can make places better for guide dogs.

First up, tactile paving

Tactile paving are these little bumps we have at crossings.

They’re easier to see for some blind and visually impaired people to see, can be felt underfoot by white cane and guide dogs are trained to identify and associate them with crossing the road

They’re  usually in concrete and come in red or yellow to signify controlled or uncontrolled crossing but some areas have taken to installing metal studded tactile paving

But these becomes slippy when wet, are harder to identify by sight by people and dog and when too hot can burn their paws making them problematic for those they’re there to serve. 

Let’s stick to what we know works; red, yellow and concrete tactile paving.

Second up, crossings

I’m all for supporting campaigns for any community but not if its at the expense and puts another in danger.

And this is exactly what happens when crossings are painted multicoloured to support awareness for LGBTQ+ communities as it makes it harder for guide dogs to identify them as crossings.

It only takes an uncertain misstep or hesitancy in the road and it could put both guide dog and user at real risk.

So, look to other  infrastructure to support campaigns, leave crossings alone and stick to their natural black and white colouring

And, finally, people

Guide dogs are very easy to love, want to stroke and pay lots of attention to

But doing so while they’re working i.e., guiding a guide dog user around, can be very distracting for them putting both the guide dog and user at risk.

So, people, let’s restrain ourselves, let guide dogs do there job without distraction and save your love for other dogs with less responsibility

And that’s three ways we could make places better for guide dogs.

Learn more about how we can make places better for others at

Witten by Ben Andrews on