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IGDF Members E-Newsletter April 2024
Organization: Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation
Location: Bloomfield, CT
Job Type: Full time
Deadline: May 27, 2022

Job Description

Contact at organisation: Richard Pummell, Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation

Phone: 1 860 402 8302


Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation is excited to extend an opportunity to join our amazing team. We are currently recruiting for a Breed Manager who can bring significant experience in genetics and reproduction relative to guide dog colonies. While the following list of requirements is very comprehensive, we’d love to talk with candidates who have a compelling background with relevant experience who may not have all the key requirements that are listed …

Key responsibilities and accountabilities:


  • Establish policies and procedures for the breeding program and educate relevant internal and external stakeholders.
  • Develop a Breeding Plan in line with the organization’s strategic direction.
  • Lead the selection process and genetic oversight of guide dog stock to ensure sufficient quality and quantities to meet the puppy supply demand.
  • Review breeding stock in line with the needs of the program and assess temperament and genetics, taking into account reports and expert opinion.
  • Responsible for all duties involved in the management of the mating and reproductive cycles.
  • Responsible for supervision of artificial insemination with breeding partner as required, recognizing any abnormalities/issues which may affect successful mating.
  • Manage production of breeding stock by controlling inbreeding, monitoring fertility and improving dog quality – primarily health and temperament.
  • Coordinate with Vet Med and breeding partner to ensure regular genetic checks and blood progesterone testing on breeding stock in season, followed by accurate analysis of results, to determine optimum times for mating.
  • Make key, critical decisions regarding the health and welfare of breeding stock by considering referral and advice from specialists regarding appropriate interventions including the need for caesareans.
  • Assess, monitor and record all breeding stock data in an accurate and timely manner on internal and external systems, including the International Working Dog Register.
  • Identify breed moms’ ongoing sustainability for breeding, including consecutive mating opportunities, and making recommendations about breed moms which may need to be withdrawn from the breeding program.
  • Maintain current puppy development program from 3 days – 8 weeks.
  • Continue to develop and improve the puppy development program to stay progressive on latest developments in the field.
  • Develop curriculum for female breed dog care and enrichment while staying in pup house.
  • Monitor puppies progress for health and behavior from birth through In-For-Training.
  • Manage and train staff and volunteers in the pup houses.
  • Other duties as required by Vice President, Guide Dog Operations

People and Partnerships

  • Contribute to the recruitment and onboarding of staff and volunteer resources as needed.
  • Build strong relationships and collaborate with IGDF and ADI accredited schools and other potential breeding partners to acquire breeding stock and share best practices.
  • Provide direct supervision and support to the program staff and volunteers.
  • Responsible for planning, preparation and delivery/receipt of collaborative and mutually beneficial exchanges with other IGDF schools for enhancement of breeding programs worldwide.
  • Support and communicate with breed families regarding heat cycles, whelping times, and pre-post whelping instructions.
  • Find new breed families.
  • Train current and new families on best practices in the care of breed dogs.
  • Match breed dogs to appropriate breed homes.
  • Conduct periodic meetings, home visits or evaluation walks with breed dogs/families.
  • Support families through process of retiring a breed dog.

Quality and Compliance

  • Conduct a risk assessment to identify potential risks in relation to the Breeding Program.
  • Research and comply with all organizational, national and international regulations that relate to the breeding program.
  • Maintain current knowledge of trends and developments in relation to Guide Dog services, breeding practices, policies and legislation.
  • Ensure effective communication channels and processes are in place to effectively deal with issues, complaints and suggestions to make continuous improvement of the program.
  • Maintain Colony Data Sheets.

Required Skills and Experience:


  • Relevant qualification and previous experience in Guide Dog and/or Assistance Dog breeding.
  • Significant (5+ years) experience in the whelping and rearing of puppies.
  • Knowledge of best practices and standards of breeding and canine anatomy and reproduction.
  • Previous experience working directly with dogs/puppies which may include whelping, training, supervision, care and welfare.
  • Experience in developing estimated breeding values (EVB’s).
  • Project management experience including implementation.
  • Ability to demonstrate knowledge of current theory and good practice in the physical and temperamental development of pups and adult dogs, and the respective influence of genetics and the environment.
  • Proven experience of supervising staff, including the ability to develop and manage staff performance.
  • Effective planning to meet personal, team and organizational objectives.
  • Ability to analyse data and evaluate its impact.
  • Excellent influencing and interpersonal skills with people at all levels.
  • Ability to build and manage internal and external relationships.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills.
  • Computer literate with strong skills in the Microsoft Office suite (Outlook, Excel, Word, PowerPoint).
  • Valid driver’s license.


  • Guide dog mobility instructor experience or similar animal training qualification.
  • Experience with Assistance Dog Programs.
  • Previous experience working with frozen semen and artificial insemination.
  • Experience working with International Working Dog Register.

How to Apply

Please send a cover letter highlighting your experience relevant to the position description and a copy of your resume to