Pupdate: Emma & Fable

Just got word today that Emma won’t be assigned to a training string until November 3rd. If I understand right, the reports for Thursday’s phase reports are turned in the Friday before. If that is the case then we won’t see Emma’s name on the phase report until November 13th, two months after we put her on the puppy truck for San Rafael. I really appreciate our CFR (community field representative) for the heads up on this. I had noticed that it was taking what seemed like a long time for former breeder eval dogs to show up on the phase report, but this is a really, really long time. I was hoping she would show up yesterday.

Fable is growing fast and learning everyday. Some days are a struggle but she is improving. I can’t wait until she can walking nicely with her head collar on. Right now socializing takes ever ounce of attention and patience I have. I’ve continued doing #Inktober drawings of Fable. Here are the last weeks efforts.

Pupdate: Emma

Emma on the puppy truck

We got word yesterday that Emma has been dropped from consideration as a breeder. She will be spayed and when she has healed she will start training to be a guide dog. She was dropped for TVD (Tricuspid Valve Dysplasia). It is a congenital and heritable heart defect that is fairly common in labs. Her condition is referred to as equivocal which means that the EKG shows she is in the gray area of the condition. From my research they don’t really know how much valve leakage is “normal” in dogs. It seems Emma has some leakage but not enough to be a problem for her health. But since it is an inheritable condition they don’t want to use dogs with even the equivocal form of the disease. I wonder if this is the same reason Yakira was dropped. All we found out for here was that her EKG wasn’t perfect.

Now the waiting begins for Emma to show up on the weekly phase reports. My guess is that it will be at least two weeks but could be as long as 4 more weeks. It would have been fun to see little Emma pups but I didn’t really expect her to be selected for breeding. Just doesn’t seem to be our lot to raiser breeders. I’m super happy to be raising guide dogs.

p.s. Fable is making great progress and is a fun and sometimes challenging puppy but very sweet and cute.

p.s.s. Today marks 5 years since we put Apex on the truck back to GDB to start his training as a guide dog.

Pupdate: All pups

As I looked back I realized I haven’t done an update on most of my pups since March so here goes:

Apex curled up on the car seat

Apex, the senior pup of the group turned 6 years old in May. He is still a happy and healthy boy. They went on a cruise to Key West in the spring. Apex is a frequent traveler. I wish I traveled to as many fun places as he does. Sue retired from a long-time position a couple of months ago, so Apex’s days are a little slower, though she has been super busy taking care of family and friends in need. Sue starts a substitute teaching job this fall. I’m sure Apex will enjoy being around the kids again after the summer off.

Mark and Banta at the Furry Scurry

Banta still loves being a guide dog. She and Mark went out to dinner a while ago and as they were leaving a group of people where admiring Banta. One of them said, “your dog looks so happy.” She had her head and tail up and wagging as they walked out. Mark loves her spunky personality. They are such a perfect match. He wrote this about her recently:

She has learned a new bad habit. When we are going home and I have my cane, I undo her leash when we are getting close to our back gate. She lets me walk about 5 feet and then runs and either jumps and hits me in the back or runs around and punches me in the stomach. She does this about every 5 feet until we get home. It probably does not help that I start to laugh and give her treats when she punches me. Sometimes I reach out to grab her and she will jump and do a 360 turn in the air, of course that is worth another treat.

Casey curled up on her bed

Casey and Carrie spent 10 days in Italy this year. She enjoyed the cobblestone streets and lounging in the sun. When they got home Carrie went through the final ceremonies for becoming a lawyer. She is working in the same firm where she articled. They moved her office to the sunny side of the building so that Casey could enjoy the sun. She is a fair weather girl.

Waffle met Carole two years ago on Sunday. She gained another sibling this year. It is a four dog household now. With Emma going to San Rafael there is a good chance we will be taking a trip there in a few months. Waffle lives in the area so I’m hoping the timing works out to see Waffle and meet Carole while we are there. No new photos of Waffle to share but Carole posted this Short Video on Facebook. I think you will be able to see it. Waffle plays the supporting role to her sister Shelley.

Sharan and Yakira on the cruise to Key West

Yakira got to go on her first cruise in May. Apex who is a veteran cruiser was there to show her the ropes. So awesome that two of our pups got to go on a cruise together. Sharan had hip replacements soon after the cruise and is now starting to get out and about again. Yakira is enjoying life in Florida at just the pace she likes, slow and easy.

Zodiac and friend Roxie watching over Kolton

Zodiac and David just passed their year mark as a team this month. They are now officially a successful guide dog team. Zodiac is devoted to David and remains the same fun-loving dog he was as a puppy. I am hoping to plan a road trip to Missouri to see them in the near future.

Dune chillin’ out in her new digs

Dune and Ashleigh have been a team for two months now. Though she is not a fan of the Arizona heat she loves being a guide dog. Here is some of what Ashleigh has said about Dune:

I have to say, Dune is an amazing guide. Dune is a spark plug. She always wants to get going and I am so happy to see her tail wag when I grab the harness. I really have seen her excitement and joy at being told she did a great job and getting a good pat on the head. It makes me smile regularly to see her tail wag in excitement at finding that tricky doorway or that randomly placed light post.

Emma’s Farewell Party Invitation

Emma will be getting on the puppy truck in two weeks from tomorrow. The last few weeks always go so fast. So much to fit into those last days. I never seem to get enough photos taken. I still need a really good picture for her official portrait. We are having the traditional farewell party for Emma a week from Sunday in the afternoon. If you are in the area and want to come let me know and I’ll send you our address. We are going to miss her lots, but she is ready to go and I’m excited to see if she wants to be a guide dog.

Puppy Truck Countdown14F puppy comes in just 13 days! Time to get geared up for a cute but clueless puppy. It is such a shock to go from a well-trained dog to the brand new puppy but it is also fun to see them for the first time, learn their name, and get to figure out their personality. Each puppy is different and we learn so much from each one of them. Still time to add names to the name guessing contest.

Boy that took longer than I planned. Guess I’d better do updates on the pups as they come in instead of doing them all at once. It will be my goal to get updates done every Friday.

Pupdate: Coming & Going

Puppy Truck Countdown21Just 20 days until our new “F” puppy comes. Here is the current list of names from the naming contest. It is an impressive list of names. But there is still time to add your suggestions. Additions don’t have to be unique. This is also about guessing what her name will be, so you can “vote” for a name already on the list. If I’ve failed to credit you for a suggestion let me know and I’ll add your name to a suggestion. I see a couple that I don’t have anyone down for suggesting (oops).

  • Faberge     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabia     Minh
  • Fabian     Jan
  • Fabiana     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabianna     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabianne      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabrica     Kellie
  • Fabiola     Minh
  • Fable      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabray      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabrice      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fabulous      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Facet     Tina
  • Fáelán      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fahari     Janine
  • Fahrenheit     Tara
  • Fairfax      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fairlane     Kellie
  • Fairy     Karen (Lisbon), Minh
  • Fairytale     Kellie
  • Faith     Jo Ann, Louise, Kellie
  • Fajita     Martha, Tara
  • Fala       Karen (Lisbon), Janine
  • Falafel      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Falcon     Janine, Louise
  • Falina      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Faline     Kellie
  • Falkland      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Falla     Tina
  • Fame     Martha
  • Famous      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fancine     Laurel
  • Fancy     Holly, Randy, Karen (Lisbon), Brianne, Tara
  • Fandango     Jan
  • Fanfare     Janine
  • Fanny      Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Kellie
  • Fanta      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fantastic      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fantasy      Karen (Lisbon), Tara, Kellie
  • Fantine      Karen (Lisbon), Minh
  • Fanya      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fantasia     Donna, Holly, Laurel
  • Fantine     Kellie
  • Fara     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Farckle     Tara
  • Faren     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Farewell      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fargo     Toni
  • Farhana     Laurel
  • Farica     Janine
  • Farida     Laurel
  • Farina     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Farissa     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Farley     Minh
  • Faro     Tina
  • Farrah     Jo Ann, Tara, Karen (Lisbon), Toni
  • Farsi     MInh, Linsay
  • Fascia     Tina
  • Fashion     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
  • Fate     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fatima      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Faun     Tina
  • Fauna      Karen (Lisbon), Minh
  • Fausta       Karen (Lisbon)
  • Faustine      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fava     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Favor        Karen (Lisbon)
  • Fawn     Donna, Kellie, Karen (Lisbon), Janine
  • Fawna     Kellie
  • Fax      Karen (Lisbon), Jan
  • Fayda     Karen (Lisbon)
  • Faydra     Kellie
  • Faye     Louise, Karen (Lisbon), Minh
  • Fayette     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
  • Fayla      Karen (Lisbon)
  • Falin     Kellie
  • Fayna     Janine
  • Feather     Jo Ann, Karen (Lisbon)
  • Febe     Minh
    February     Louise
    FedEx     Jan
    Fedora      Karen (Lisbon), Jo Ann
    Feisty      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felda      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felena      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felice      Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Janine
    Felicia     Kellie, Karen (Lisbon)
    Felicidad      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felicity      Karen (Lisbon), Minh, Kellie
    Felipa      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felisha      Karen (Lisbon)
    Felita     Karen (Lisbon)
    Felix     Minh, Jan
    Feliz     Laurel
    Fema     Minh
    Fender     Marilyn
    Fennel     Karen (Lisbon)
    Ferdinand     Minh
    Fergie     Karen (Lisbon), Toni
    Ferguson     Toni
    Fermata     Jan
    Fern     Kellie, Bill, Karen (Lisbon), Janine
    Fernanda      Karen (Lisbon)
    Ferrah     Kellie
    Ferrari     Roxanne
    Ferris     Kellie
    Festal     Jan
    Festival     Tara, Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Jan
    Festive     Donna, Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Feta     Martha
    Fez     Laurel
    Fianna     Karen (Lisbon), Katie
    Fiat     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fiddle     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Janine, Tara
    Fiddler     Tara, Kellie
    Fidel     Tara
    Fidela     Janine
    Fiera     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fiero     Minh
    Fiery      Karen (Lisbon)
    Fiesta     Tara, Karen (Lisbon). Laurel
    Fifa     Minh
    Fife     Tina
    Fifer     Kellie
    Fifi     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Fig      Karen (Lisbon)
    Figaro     Jan
    Fiji     Tara
    Filamena     Brianne
    Filene     Karen (Lisbon), Minh, Tina
    Filigree     Karen (Lisbon)
    Filipa      Karen (Lisbon)
    Filippa     Donna
    Filly     Karen (Lisbon)
    Film     Tara
    Filomena     Minh
    Fina     Karen (Lisbon), Meagan
    Finaky     Louise
    Finale     Janine, Jan
    Finbar     Tara
    Finder     Karen (Lisbon)
    Finesse     Donna, Karen (Lisbon)
    Finish     Louise
    Fink     Tara
    Finley     Minh
    Finn     Minh
    Finnian     Jan
    Finola      Karen (Lisbon), Lindsay, Tara, Katie, Jo Ann
    Fiona     Jo Ann, Donna, Karen (Lisbon). Kellie
    Fionna     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fir     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fireball     Tara
    Firebird     Karen (Lisbon)
    Firecracker     Tara
    Firefly     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Kellie
    Firelight     Laurel
    Firework     Tara
    Firenze      Karen (Lisbon)
    Fisher     Minh
    Fisk     Jan
    Fix     Tara
    Fizz     Tara, Laurel
    Fjord     Laurel
    Flag     Jan
    Flagler     Jan
    Flake     Kellie
    Flair     Jo Ann, Karen (Lisbon)
    Flamingo      Karen (Lisbon)
    Flan     Randy, Karen (Lisbon)
    Flame     Lindsay, Laurel, Tara
    Flannel      Karen (Lisbon)
    Flare     Randy, Tina
    Flash     Randy, Lindsay, Minh
    Flavia      Karen (Lisbon)
    Flavor     Laurel
    Flax     Tina
    Fleece     Laurel, Tara
    Fleur      Karen (Lisbon), Minh
    Fletch     Kellie
    Fletcher     Minh
    Flick     Kellie
    Flicka     Karen (Lisbon), Marilyn, Katie, Kellie
    Flicker     Minh
    Flickr     Kellie
    Flight      Karen (Lisbon)
    Flirt     Jo Ann, Karen (Lisbon)
    Flit     Kellie
    Flo      Karen (Lisbon), Toni
    Float     Jan
    Flora     Jo Ann, Kellie. currentdescendent, Karen (Lisbon), Marilyn
    Floral     Jo Ann
    Florella     Karen (Lisbon)
    Florence     Karen (Lisbon)
    Florencia     Karen (Lisbon). Laurel
    Florentina      Karen (Lisbon)
    Florette     Laurel
    Florianne      Karen (Lisbon)
    Florida     Karen (Viansa & Ballad), Donna, Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Kellie
    Floriah     Marilyn
    Florie     Karen (Lisbon)
    Florinda      Karen (Lisbon)
    Florine     Kellie
    Flossie     Kellie
    Flouta     Laurel
    Flower     Jo Ann, Louise, Karen (Lisbon)
    Fluffy      Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Flurry     Jo Ann, Kellie, Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Flute     Karen (Lisbon), Marilyn, Jo Ann
    Flutter      Karen (Lisbon)
    Flyer     Jan, Loiuse
    Foggy     Karen (Lisbon)
    Folly     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fonda      Karen (Lisbon), Janine, Tina
    Fondant     Jo Ann
    Fondue     Jo Ann, Karen (Lisbon), Lindsay
    Font     Jan
    Fontina     Jan
    Fontaine     Laurel
    Fontainot     Laurel
    Fontana     Jo Ann, Karen (Lisbon)
    Fontina     Jo Ann, Kellie
    Fordham     Minh
    Forest     Karen (Lisbon), Jan
    Formosa     Karen (Lisbon)
    Forsythia     Karen (Lisbon)
    Forte     Jan
    Fortitude     Minh
    Fortissima     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fortunata     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fortuna     Jan, Jo Ann
    Fortune     Karen (Lisbon), Kellie, Jan, Loiuse
    Fountain     Tara, Laurel
    Forward     Craig
    Fossey     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fountain     Karen (Lisbon)
    Foxy      Karen (Lisbon), Marilyn
    Fraline     Donna, Laurel
    France      Karen (Lisbon), Marilyn, Lindsay
    Frances     Jan
    Francesca     Tara, Karen (Lisbon), Minh
    Francisco     Minh
    Francine     Tara, Randy, Karen (Lisbon), Kellie
    Francis     Karen (Lisbon), Kellie, Jan, Toni
    Francisca     Karen (Lisbon)
    Francoise     Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Franconia     Jan
    Frankenstein      Karen (Lisbon)
    Frankfort     Minh
    Frankie     Lisa, cottonthemaltese
    Franklin
    Franklynn     Katie
    Franky     Marilyn
    Franna      Karen (Lisbon)
    Frannie     Becky
    Freckles     Karen (Viansa & Ballad)
    Fred     Toni
    Freda     Donna
    Frederica      Karen (Lisbon)
    Frederick     Minh
    Fredrick’a     Kellie
    Freedom     Holly, Tara, Karen (Lisbon)
    Freetown     Laurel
    Freesia     Karen (Viansa & Ballad)
    Freezee     Louise
    French     Tara
    Frenchie     Randy
    Frenchy      Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Fresca     Crystal, Karen (Lisbon), Lindsay, Minh
    Fresh     Randy
    Fresia     Kellie
    Frey     Tina
    Freya     Joanie, Karen (Lisbon)
    Frida     currentdescendent
    Friday     Louise, Karen (Lisbon), Laurel
    Frieda      Karen (Lisbon), Jan
    Friend     Tara, Kellie
    Friendship     Laurel
    Frieze     Tara
    Fringe     Tara
    Frisbee     Tara, Karen (Lisbon)
    Frisco     Randy, Toni
    Friska     Brianne
    Frisky     Randy
    Fritter     Jan, Kellie
    Fritos     Tara
    Fritter     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fritz     Karen (Lisbon), Tara, Minh
    Fritzi      Karen (Lisbon), Janine
    Fizz     Donna
    Frizzle     Tara
    Frolic     Janinie, Karen (Lisbon), Holly
    Frost     Karen (Lisbon), Kellie
    Frosty     Minh, Jen
    Frozen     Karen (Lisbon), Tara
    Fruit      Karen (Lisbon), Tara

    Fuchsia     Kellie, Karen (Lisbon)
    Fudge     Louise, Karen (Lisbon)
    Fugue     Tina
    Fulani     Laurel
    Fun     Randy, Karen (Lisbon)
    Funky     Karen (Lisbon)
    Fusion     Laurel
    Futura     Karen (Lisbon), Jan
    Future      Karen (Lisbon), Laurel, Jan
    Fuzz     Tara
    Fuzzy     Donna
    Fye
    Fynn     Minh
    Fyodor     Minh

Single Paw Print Countdown23Emma had her official eval today. It was planned for Liberty Park but the rain moved it to PetSmart. She has a hard time with pet stores so she wasn’t on her best behavior. She was super sniffy and some distracted. But she did fine anyway and she is on the September recall. So she will be leaving in 22 days for San Rafael, California. Our pups usually go to Boring, Oregon but for some reason this recall is for San Rafael. Banta was our only other pup to be recalled to San Rafael. While I’m excited to see what Emma decides to do with her life, I was hoping that she would be around for a few weeks to mentor miss “F”. But she is ready, more ready than Dune or Zodiac where. So there will be just two days of overlap between the new puppy and Emma, the time it takes for the puppy truck to go to Colorado and drop off baby puppies and then return picking up grown-up recall dogs.

I need to take lots more photos of Emma over the next 3 weeks and see if I can get her puppyhood book done to send a digital copy along with her on the puppy truck. Oh my, there is always so much to get done. Yikes! I’m sure they would like her end of project report asap too. Most of all we are going to miss that sweet little girl. I’ll just have to enjoying everyone of the next 22 days.

F Puppy naming contest

Puppy Truck Countdown29Another day of delinquency. Not good, I’ve got to get back on track tomorrow. New puppy only a little to blame. I’m also busy getting things started on this years candy window Christmas display. The real problem is giving this history enough priority each and everyday. Thank goodness tomorrow is a new day and time for a fresh start.

Now to the other purpose for this post. It is traditional to let friends guess the name of our puppies before they arrive. We don’t find out their names until they hand us the puppy of the truck. So for little miss “F” I’ve decided to make an official contest to guess her name. The prize is a personalized fleece travel mat designed for dogs but it also works well for babies and it would work for a lap blanket too. If more than one person guesses her name, I’ll do a drawing to pick the winner of the blanket.

You can enter the contest by commenting below or send me an email. Facebook also works. Have fun guessing. Guide Dogs for the Blind is very creative in naming their puppies since they need unique names for all working guide dogs, puppies in training and breeder dogs. Have fun thinking up “F” names!

Puppy #9

day 29 Puppy Truck CountdownI’m delinquent on my writing challenge today. My excuses are a busy day followed by the long-awaited news of our next puppy in training. Our little black lab will be arriving on September 11th and her name starts with an “F”! Yeah I’m so excited to get my “F” puppy.

We still don’t know if Emma will be leaving on the same truck but my guess is that she won’t go back until the next truck. It is a partly scientific guess based on the previous recalls this year. Emma is ready to go but it will be good to have her around to mentor our new little one.

Dune’s Tune

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We are off for a quick weekend camping trip so I’m taking a vacation from the writing challenge today, but I thought I’d share this crazy video I put together for Dune. The lyrics were a collaborative effort of an email group I’m on called the GDB Lounge with guide dog users and puppy raisers. I song is so much fun that we did our best to sing it at Dune’s graduation. It certainly isn’t a musical master piece but it is very Dune. I hope you enjoy it and that our very imperfect voices don’t mess up the spirit of the video too much. Click on the image above to see the video.