Banta’s Book – Bonded

Bonded: to connect, hold together

Banta is good at making connections with others. She is of course bonded to us as her puppy raisers. She loves to have snuggle time either taking a nap or curling up between you legs while you sit on the ground.

Banta would get very excited in the evening when she would hear the garage door open. She would run to the window to look out or run to the door to wait for Bill to come in. At her last puppy class before leaving for San Rafael one of the other raisers commented on how bonded she is to us. I know that she will make that same kind of bond with someone else in her future.

[photo 1: Bill sitting on the floor of our family room with Casey and Banta curled up together in his lap, photo 2: Banta looking out our front window to see if Bill is coming home, photo 3: Bill kneeling on the stairs with Banta on the top reaching down to give him a kiss on the cheek]

Banta’s Book – Bold

Bold: courageous and daring

Banta came off the truck a very confident and bold puppy. We introduced her to Apex, our first puppy in training who was going back to Guide Dogs for the Blind a couple of days later, and she jumped right up and started biting his neck. The only thing she was cautious about was heights. She is still a very adaptable dog, who handles new situations with confidence and curiosity.

[Banta is 8 weeks old in all these photos and Apex, black lab, is 16 months old – photo 1: Banta on the grass nose to nose with Apex with a very focused look on her face, photo 2: Banta at 8 weeks and Apex sitting side by side on the grass – Banta looking up at Apex and Apex with his head turned slightly away, photo 3: Banta chewing on Apex’s tail laying on the grass, photo 4: Apex laying on the grass with Banta standing in front of him trying to chew on his face]

Banta’s Book – Blonde

Blonde: woman or girl with fair hair

I often called Banta my blonde girl. When she was very young she was a platinum blonde. As she grew she darkened into more of a beautiful strawberry blonde.  When she was about five to six months old she also had a curl in the fur of her tail that made her tail look like a corkscrew. Her corkscrew tail went away as she finished growing up.

[photo 1: very close-up shot of Banta curled up showing her creamy blonde fur, photo 2: close-up of Banta’s legs crisscrossed and curled together, photo 3: close-up of Banta’s tail with the curve at the end, photo 4: view of Banta from above showing the darker color of the fur down her back]

Banta’s Book – Blink

Blink: to open and close the eyes

Banta has a very penetrating gaze when she wants something but other times when she is just looking at you she will blink but with just one of her eyes, so it actually looks like she is winking at you.

[photo 1: close up of Banta with both of her eyes squeezed tightly shut, photo 2: Banta sitting facing forward with one eye closed and the other open, photo 3: Banta standing with one eye open and the other side shut]

Banta’s Book – Birthright

Birthright:  privileges entitled by birth

Banta’s genetics are the result of many years of careful breeding by Guide Dogs for the Blind. A raiser who does serious research into Guide Dogs for the Blind breeding said this about Banta. “I can definitely see why Banta is being evaluated for breeding, she carries some of the finest examples of GDB breeding and would make a fine ‘ambassador.’”

Banta’s siblings have also lived up to this birthright; Bailey (F) – guide, Bandit (M) – career changed for joint problem, Baxter (M) – guide, Bella (F)  – wheelchair guide and Brannan (M)- guide.

Banta’s Pedigree Chart:
Parents: Jenkins & Sunrise
Grandparents: Kentucky & Trinity, Kentucky & Joette II
Great-Grandparents: Signal & Regent, Tiburon & Lilith II, Signal & Regent, Wallace II & Mavis II
Great-Great-Grandparents: Nevin & Anita, Lapper & Heidi, Tex & Ricotta II, Klondike & Whimsy, Nevin & Anita, Lapper & Heidi, Ferris & Jalisa II, Roddy & Ann III

[photo 1: Sunrise, yellow lab, and her 4 day old puppies, all yellow labs, in a blue kiddie swimming pool with newspaper in the bottom – the photo is taken from above and Sunrise is looking up at the camera – the puppies are sleeping scattered all around the pool, photo 2: Kentucky, yellow lab in his old age with a blue bandana around his neck, laying on a wooden deck]

Banta’s Book – Benevolent

Benevolent: goodwill or kindly feelings

Even as a young puppy Banta had a sensitive, kindly side. She really showed this when Casey, another puppy in training, joined our family. Banta was so patient and kind. Casey was shy and fearful but with Banta’s mentorship she blossomed into a confident puppy.

When Casey started teething Banta’s ears where her favorite “chew toy.” One day Casey chewed on Banta’s ear while she was loosing a tooth and Banta’s ear ended up coated with blood.

[photo 1: Casey and Banta in our kitchen eating their dinner side by side out of stainless steel bowls. Banta was in season so she is wearing a pink pull-up diaper, photo 2: looking down from above on Casey and Banta chewing on the same sterilized bone by my desk, photo 3: side view of Casey and Banta laying alertly side by side next to each other looking in the same direction, photo 4: Casey and Banta snuggled up with each other on a patchwork quilt, photo 5: close up of Banta’s ear covered with Casey’s bloody saliva]

Banta’s Book – Beloved

Beloved: greatly loved; dear to the heart

Banta is one of those dogs that gets into your heart. Her “Aunt Lisa” had never let a dog give her kisses before but Banta won her heart in such a way that every time she came to see Banta she made sure that she got kisses from Banta. There were several people who didn’t really know Banta that well but they always were commenting on how much they loved her. We of course as her puppy raisers love her dearly. She was a challenge as a young puppy but she will always have a special place in our hearts.

[photo 1: Lisa Monson is lifting up 8 week old Banta in her arms. They are face to face and Banta is yawning with her tongue sticking out, photo 2: close-up of Lisa Monson a grown-up Banta with their noses almost touching laying on the floor of our family room. Lisa Monson is puckering her lips to give Banta a kiss, photo 3: same as photo 2 but now Lisa Monson has her hands on each side of Banta’s face and they are looking into each other’s eyes. Lisa is smiling]

Banta’s Book – Beautiful

Beautiful: wonderful; very pleasing; delightful

Banta is such a strikingly beautiful puppy. With her light creamy fur and her dark eyes she received lots and lots of comments are her looks. As she grew up the accents on her ears and down her back grew darker into a butterscotch or caramel color. One day not long before she went back to Guide Dogs for the Blind we were walking along the Jordan River with the sun on her fur she looked like she was burnished with copper. These photos taken by our puppy club leader in December of 2009 are my favorites showing the beauty of her younger days.

[these photos were taken by photographer Lisa Thompson in a studio setting with a white background taken December 2009 – photo 1: close-up of Banta with a curious and watchful expression on her face, photo 2: close-up of Banta from the side looking upward, photo 3: very close-up of Banta’s face with her head resting on her paws, photo 4: another close-up of Banta from the other side looking off into the distance]

Banta’s Book – Baroness

Baroness: a lady of quality, noblewoman

Banta is definitely a lady of quality. When she first came to us at eight weeks old she had the hardest time going to sleep on a hard surface. She seemed like the princess and the pea, the softer the surface the better.  When you asked her to lay on a hard floor she would just look at you like “you must be kidding, I can’t possible lay-down on that.” As a grown-up puppy Banta learned to appreciate the virtues of hard surfaces, especially in the heat of summer. She now has no problem curling up to wait in a meeting even if the floor is wood or tile.

[photo 1: Banta at a year old – laying alertly on the grass, photo 2: close-up shot of Banta half a sleep on her dog bed, photo 3: close-up of Banta laying in the sun on our back deck]

Banta’s Book – Bark

Bark: The abrupt explosive cry of a dog

As a young puppy Banta barked lots. We thought our previous puppy had barked more than optimal but Banta barked more in the first week than Apex had in the last year. When she didn’t get her way she had the funniest little trill. She would point her chin to the sky and let out this half whine, half bark that was unique. As she matured Banta rarely barked except when she wanted to play with another dog.

[photo 1: Banta’s Litter – two yellow lab puppies just a few weeks old – one facing forward the other with its nose up looking like it is howling – in the whelping kennels at Guide Dogs for the Blind with shredded newspaper in the background; photos 2 & 3: close-ups of Banta in Bill’s arms just after she got off the puppy truck – 8 weeks old]