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

Guide dog 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.

What is an extraordinary veterinary expense for working 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?

  • Expenses normally covered by the school that trained the guide dog
  • Pet insurance policies held by the school or the user
  • Expenses already reimbursed by another organization or service club
  • Veterinary expenses (including euthanasia) for a retired guide dog who is no longer in active service
  • Routine veterinary care including: check-ups, vaccinations.  grooming (such as nail clipping and ear cleaning), flea and heart worm medication and teeth cleaning

Who makes treatment decisions?

A guide dog's handler and the veterinarian make decisions together about the best treatment for the dog. CNIB will let you know if treatment is eligible for funding.

When can I apply?

You can apply after your guide dog has received treatment, submitting your veterinary invoices with the application form.
If an estimate related to an extraordinary expense such as surgery is requested prior to treatment, eligible reimbursement will not occur until after veterinary invoices have been submitted.
Application for reimbursement should be submitted no more than three months after treatment.

How do I apply?

The application form can be downloaded here:

Please fax or email a complete application form to:

(416) 480-7700

Attention: Administrator, Guide Dog Assistance Fund,



What happens to my application?

We will confirm receipt of your application within 48 hours. The application will be carefully reviewed before approving a request.
CNIB may decide to pay all, part, or none of an eligible extraordinary veterinary expense. Reimbursement is at the sole discretion of CNIB and the decision is final.

Once a request is approved, reimbursement takes about one month. 

For more information, contact the administrator of the Guide Dog Assistance Fund at:


Assistance for Conferences and Training Events

What types of activities are eligible for funding?

Eligible activities are limited to: conferences, workshops and training events for or about guide dogs and their users taking place in Canada within four months of when the application for funding is made. Funding is intended to reduce attendance fees as opposed to travel and accommodation expenses..

Who can apply?

Any registered charitable organization in Canada. Proof of registration as a charitable organization must be provided.

Application Process

The first step in the process is to seek an assessment of eligibility for reimbursement. To do that, please complete the application form, then fax or email the completed application, together with event budget, to:

(416) 480-7700

Attention administrator, Guide Dog Assistance Fund



You can also mail the documents to:

Attention: Administrator Guide Dog Assistance Fund


1929 Bayview Ave., Toronto, Ontario

M4G 3E8

  • After the application has been approved and the conference has taken place, submit invoices for reimbursement of expenses, within one month of the event
  • Following a review, the fund manager may decide to pay all, part or none of the expense
  • Reimbursement is at the sole discretion of the fund manager and the decision is final

How can I donate to the Guide Dog Assistance Fund?

To donate to the Guide Dog Assistance Fund or any of the CNIB’s vital programs and services, call 1-800-563-2642. Tax receipts will be issued for donations of $15 or more.

Charitable Registration No. 119219459 RR0003