Photo of a CNIB guide dog: Black Lab wearing a yellow vest.

Assistance Fund

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The Guide Dog Assistance Fund provides support for extraordinary veterinary expenses as well as support to attend conferences and meetings related to guide dog issues. There is also support available to assist with legal fees related to guide dog access rights.


What is an extraordinary veterinary expense for guide dogs?

Emergency or unexpected expenses that are not routine care expenses, including but not limited to:
•    emergency care
•    surgical procedures, excluding teeth cleaning
•    treatment for infections and fractures
•    long-term medications
•    special diets prescribed by veterinarian
•    the cost of euthanasia

What is not covered by the fund?

•    Routine veterinary care including: check-ups, vaccinations. flea and heartworm medication,  grooming (such as

nail clipping and ear cleaning) and teeth cleaning
•    Alternative treatments and procedures by someone other than a veterinarian
•    Expenses normally covered by the school that trained the guide dog
•    Expenses covered by pet insurance policies held by the school or the handler 
•    Expenses already reimbursed by another organization  

Who makes treatment decisions?

A guide dog's handler and the veterinarian make decisions together about the best treatment for the dog.  

When can I apply?

It is recommended that you contact us in advance if possible, to determine if your treatment will be covered by the Assistance Fund.
The Application Form is submitted after your guide dog has received 
  treatment, along with your veterinary invoices.
Please Note: If an estimate related to an extraordinary expense such as surgery is approved prior to treatment, eligible reimbursement will not occur until after veterinary invoices have been submitted.

Application for reimbursement should be submitted no more than six months after treatment.

How do I apply?

There are two options:

1. Download and complete the application form 
Please note you can set up an appointment with someone at your local CNIB office to help you download and complete the form. The form is available below:

2. You can call (Eastern Time Office Hours) CNIB Guide Dogs Administrative Assistant, Miriam Mas,
to help you complete the application over the phone.
C: 343-997-2498
Once the form is completed, send the form and the invoice for the treatment to:


Or you can mail it to:

Attn: Miriam Mas
Administrator, Guide Dog Fund
P.O. Box 1474
Kemptville, ON
K0G 1J0

What happens to my application?

The application will be  reviewed before approving a request.
CNIB Guide Dogs may pay all, part, or none of the submitted expense depending on the eligibility requirements outlined above. Once a decision is made you will receive a letter by mail or email explaining the decision.
Reimbursement should take 2-3 weeks after approval.  

For more information, contact the administrator of the Guide Dog Assistance Fund by the email address or phone number listed above.

2. Assistance for Conferences and Training Events

Email or call the Guide Dog Assistance Fund Administrator at:
C: 343-997-2498
You will need to provide: Name of event, date, who is organizing the event and the cost. 
CNIB Guide Dogs may assist with some or all the registration fee for the event. Costs can only be reimbursed after receipt of the invoice for the event. Invoices can be submitted via email or mail as outlined for veterinary reimbursements above.

3. Assistance Fund for Legal Support
For assistance with legal support around access rights for guide dog teams please contact the Assistance Fund Administrator at:

C: 343-997-2498

How can I donate to the Guide Dog Assistance Fund?
You can donate to the Guide Dog Assist Fund or any of the CNIB Foundation programs by clicking the DONATE button on the top of this page or calling 1-800-563-2642.