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Madison HS students training guide dog puppies

SAN ANTONIO – For the first time in Texas, a high school is getting five puppies to be trained as guide dogs.

Each pup will be paired up with a student at Northeast Independent School District's Madison High School.

It's hoped the purebred Labrador puppies will grow up to help the visually impaired.

Students have 18 months to socialize the dogs and get them ready to enter training at Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Students selected for the program will be guided by their veterinary science teacher. They'll apply the skills they've learned in their small animal management and veterinary classes to real-life situations.

Marina Orillane, a junior at Madison, will be using food as a reward to train her dog, Naples.

"So whenever they do it right, you give them some kibble. And they start to learn, 'If this is what I'm doing, they'll give me kibble,' so, that's how you train them," Orillane said.

"I'm hoping that he'll be able to listen and he'll be able to pass the program and become a guide dog so he can help somebody," Kyleigh Mungia, a senior at Madison with the only male dog in the group, said.

If the students put in the work and take the time to teach their puppies what they're supposed to, their pup could change someone's life.

"This is so amazing. I'm so happy I can help other people," Orillane said.

After their 18-month stay in San Antonio, the dogs will go back to California, where they'll enter formal training at Guide Dogs for the Blind.