Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Two Steps forward, One Step Back.

I feel like saying one step forward and two steps backwards and that may be more accurate, but I am going to try to stick with the glass half full outlook.

We released Tenaya to be placed into a Community Placement but unfortunately our CFR just received word today that she would not be accepted with her hip dysplasia. I kept thinking it was odd that they would place a dog with hip dysplasia but was willing to see where that lead. I would take her back in a heart beat but where we stand now our living situation is not where we want it to be. I told Jarett when we released Tenaya that if by chance she didn't make it I was done and I was taking her back, but reality set in today. I have a few phone calls to make. I have more research for how to care for a dog with hip issues. I have to see if she can work as a therapy dog with hip dysplasia. If that IS a possibility then we may be able to take her back if not...... I have a few people that may take her. Nothing is for sure.

So now moving on to the third time having to give my dog away, I am getting worn out. Wait I am supposed to stay optimistic but I keep thinking of when I called her Lady she would run over head low tail wagging, so happy to be getting some attention. The way she knew I was upset and would walk up, sit right by my side and give me her sweet eyes and happy grunts. Then I look down to my side and see Halette and can't help but think of the "what ifs" with her. What if Halette doesn't make it? Where will she end up? Can I take her? Then I can't raise these dogs any longer.

This is not easy.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Look Who's Back, Back Again

We got a call last night that Halette was ready for pick up. So we scheduled to pick her up today at two. TRAFFIC WAS SOOOOOO BAD. I think we saw two major wreaks with flipped cars and stretchers and at least 3-4 minor crashes plus construction. So needless to say, it was a loooooong day with a lot of driving.

Halette settled back in right away. You may be wondering who that yellow butt is......




Nope it is Laser. We are puppy sitting him for the weekend. Here he is waiting to be fed.

I think we can say he is a CRAZy for his food.

We have been keeping him pretty busy today since we picked him up. Tomorrow we are taking Halette and Laser bowling with our puppy raising club. Carla (our great dane) is a little unsure about him since he likes to bark when he plays. She is fine but when Laser barks she looks at me like he wasn't supposed to do that, I don't like it mama.

Laser enticing Halette to play.

And... it worked.

Halette defending herself


Some vicious guide dog pups we have here. Oh yeah.

I only joke because every once in a while we get someone who does not like the gentle leader or who thinks the dog is vicious while wearing it. We got that today. Not too bad, they were just asking if the dogs were nice. But off to the side I heard them saying "Look he has one of those mouth things." Eh, no he could still bite you but..... he never would. (I didn't say that, just thought it.) Halette is so good on her flat collar and we were told to use the gentle leader with Laser because he is a strong willed dog. Now, I'm not in love with the head collar but we are told to use it with every dog. They need to be used to it when they go back to GD's so we do use it every once in a while.

Anyway, we are so happy to have our little crazy baby back. I was worried that we missed too much of her puppyhood but she didn't grow as much as I thought. I didn't realize how much I really missed her until we had her back.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Not a Very Wordless Wednesday

Written August 18th 1:23 am
This was going to be my wordless Wednesday but......

Well Tenaya and Halette's health seems to be going good. Halette may come home this weekend!!!! And so might Tenaya!!! No actually, probably not Tenaya as she was just CC'd for hip dysplasia. I don't know much right now other then our CFR found out yesterday and he was just as disappointed as we were. She is a really well rounded dog and the last we had talked to the vet he sounded really enthusiastic about Tenaya, but then again, that was before this news.
When Jarett walked in and sat on the couch he caught me completely by surprise. He just spat out the news. I mean, when you put your emotions into these dogs and things don't go like you hoped, it actually hurts when the news is delivered. I didn't cry, but felt like it. I can't sleep now because I have to decide weather I want to keep her or release her into another program. I also haven't really had to deal with this in years. Dogs for Diabetics was really new when I started and Teagan was career changed so I didn't know much then about alternative programs. I know there are few options out there but I don't know all of them.

While I know this is nothing I could have prevented I still feel that GUILT. I know she wants to work and I know she would have been a great mother or guide. They DID mention that they wanted us to release her, and I want to but it is like giving your dog away twice.

That was written last night. I don't have much to update you on today, other then they thought she would be great for k9 buddies or Community placement. We have not made a final decision to release her yet. Just want to let it settle, but it looks as though we probably will let her pursue a new career and see where she ends up. I will update you when things are more final.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Mondays Update

The vet said Tenaya was GREAT and she has entered breeder evaluation. Halette stomach is still on the right track so we will check back in on Friday to see if we can pick her up this weekend, which should be pretty hectic with puppy sitting Laser, but can't wait to see my little crazy baby soon.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Quick Update on the Tenaya and Halette

Just a quick update on the girls. Tenaya has not been sick while up at Guide dogs so one step forward, but has been a little sensitive there so she has a human buddy to be with at all times. I have never had this with my other dogs but was reassured that this seems to be something that some goldens need. I don't know if I will really hear any more on her other then phases and what not. SO....
Halette stomach has been holding its own. She is on a bland diet and is being slowly transitioned back to her normal diet. The vet wants to keep her through the weekend so we will know more on her Monday.

On another note Carla seems to be enjoying this whole being the baby thing.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Three boys and a Dog....... Dated July 29th 2010

My mother was watching my sister's children for the weekend so I was asked to join them in going to the movie theater. She called and asked me to find the show time. When we arrived I found that I had looked at the wrong time for the movie we were going to see. SOoooo being an hour early with three young boys and a dog we walked across the parking lot to Bass Pro.
I never go to Bass Pro, but like I said we had an hour to waste, and the boys for whatever reason are into hunting. In keeping track of three boys I figured it would be easy to let one walk the dog so they would stick by me. First I let nephew #2, who is 6, walk the dog (most of the time) and Tenaya did great. She walked loosely on the leash and she checked in with him.
When I switched over to nephew #3 Tenaya was a little more confused. It wasn't Tenaya's or the nephew's fault, just there was a lot going on and he is a little too young. So after about five minutes Tenaya went back to Nephew #2. Nephew #1 always gets to walk our dogs so he wasn't that into it with his brothers around.

This store is a good experience because there are dead stuffed animals all over, from bears, to dear, wolves and goats. They had a bear right by the pond. This bear was in a crouched position (she was once a little taken back by a crouched statue of a cat) and Tenaya didn't care. They also have a HUGE aquarium full of big fish, Tenaya found that interesting but again she didn't seem distracted by it. From there we walked up behind the waterfall. This waterfall is loud and I remember when our group went there for an outing some of the pups were a little excited by the noise, but Tenaya walked right up the stairs behind the waterfall with one of the nephews and did great. We also rode an elevator with windows and she couldn't care less.

Nephew # 2 with Tenaya at Bass Pro watching the huge fish in the tank by the waterfall.

Tenaya with Nephew #3 resting at the top of the stairs.

Elevator ride.

We somehow managed to spend an hour in Bass Pro and headed back to the movies. Nephew #2 wanted Tenaya to watch the 3D movie and wanted to put the special 3D glasses on. She didn't mind, but at times is not much of a poser in front of the camera (that and my phone camera is sssllllow) and these are the best photos we took, sorry. (I do want to make it clear, these glasses were only on for a few seconds. )
Tenaya is a TV watcher. We laugh at the things that she suddenly tunes into. She has attended the movies with us before and watched the movies as well. This time she decided to take a breather and relax on the floor.

Tenaya was ready for the 3D movie.

I know it is blurry but we were in a hurry to get to the movie.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Goodbye Tenaya.... and Halette?

Well, I'm going to guess you never saw this one coming. I know I didn't, but today we took Tenaya back. We have been struggling with the two GD pups and their health for the last month and this morning was the final straw.
We called to see if Tenaya could go back today and have Halette checked out by the on-staff vet for some minor issues we have been having.

It was the longest 45 minutes of my life while we waited for the okay to go. As soon as we got word that we could start heading up to San Rafael I started crying. Everytime Tenaya snorted/ grunted to me I cried. We had to wait until this afternoon which made it a long day. Anticipation kills me, so I cried some more here and there. The ride up there I cried but as soon as we got out of the car I was done. I felt relief. We walked into the kennels, into the office, checked in, and were directed to the vet office.

We talked over the issues (I can't stress enough they are minor but on-going) they took x-rays of Tenaya.... everything was fine there. We talked a little more about Halette, and then the vet looked at me ands asked, "Can you pick Halette up next week, we just want to get everything back on track?"
What?! I knew we were coming home one dog short but 2?
All in all I was actually relieved by this as well. I get so stressed out from the vet visits. To me it is the most stressful part about puppy raising. Not knowing what is approved and the amount of money and blah blah blah.....

So..... we left with no puppies and....... it is a little lonely here. Jarett and I were talking about it on the way out the door and we haven't been GD pupless in 5 years. I will have an update on Tenaya and Halette's health on Thursday, and won't get Halette back until at least this weekend. Other than that I only have a post or two left with Tenaya.

Tenaya on the way to drop her off at Guide Dogs for the Blind.

Halette snuggling her big sister and role model.

Jarett and Tenaya in the vet office saying his goodbyes.

But then we got word that we had to say goodbye to Halette too, so I interrupted.

Saying goodbye.

A face you can't forget.
(she made her little grunting noise here and I didn't cry.)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Tenaya's Bone Voyage

Tonight we had our monthly training meeting. We covered the new food protocol, dog distraction, and some obedience work. Jarett worked with Tenaya this meeting. I couldn't stop laughing at them because Tenaya wouldn't break eye contact with Jarett. Halette was well behaved and had great eye contact, although she still needs work. After questions and some discussion it was time to celebrate Tyka and Tenaya's Bone Voyage. We had a picture session and some good cake. Tenaya wore her cap and gown proudly........ until she was tired of it. Everyone got to say their goodbyes to Tenaya since our next outing is the weekend after she leaves. My sweet Tenaya......

Tenaya looking proud.



Jarett, Tenaya and I posing for a photo. I don't know what is going on with my hair lately.

The two graduates heading to college Tyka and Tenaya.

Donner showed up.

Here is Donner.

Not a very good photo but the only photo of Halette from tonight.

Here is Havasu, Halette's sister.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Tenaya's Recall

I got the official word yesterday that Tenaya will be leaving me and returning to the GDB campus in the August 14-15th recall date. At tomorrow's training meeting we will have a little goodbye celebration for her and Tyka, another pup who was recalled as well.
I had to explain this to my 6 year old nephew. He is my little dog whisper. He wanted to know why Tenaya has to leave. I explained how she needed to go to college to learn how to do her job. It is funny how they forget that this happens every time. Luckily they all took it well.

Wordless Wednesday #4

Carla, Halette and Tenaya

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Fun Day..... Long Day Part 2

I have been to Fun Day every year since I started raising GDB puppies. This year we decided to try out the Juno Walk. This is a booth set up with an obstacle course. You can go blindfolded or just close your eyes while a instructor guides you with a harness. I watched Jarett and intended on taking photos, but after the one photo I took of Jarett, someone came up to me and commented on what a cute pair Halette and Tenaya were. So, sorry Jarett again for the lack of photos. I overheard Jarett say that it didn't feel like he went around all those curves, so when I stepped in to take my turn I was a little surprised that I felt the complete opposite. I felt as if I was taking sharp turns.

Jarett being instructed about the different types of harnesses they use.

That's me...how exciting.

I told her I was too chicken to walk with the blindfold.

After the Juno course we walked over to get lunch where we found most of our group. We ate together and let the dogs relax a little.

Tenaya at the lunch break.

The other golden in our group, Gidget. Apparently Gidget's father was a hunting champ and has no breeding lines in service work.

After lunch we headed back to the booths because the first time around we couldn't find the sleeves. Found the sleeves, looked around at what we wish we could buy, and headed out where we made a pit stop in the kennels. There was a little station in one of the kennels were you could try out grooming your puppy blindfolded. This was an eye opener because..... well the dogs still have toothpaste all over them. It let me have a better understanding at how important it is that we work with these dogs on their patience while being groomed. Our dogs did great but poor Halette, when I brushed her teeth I forgot to look for the small side of the toothbrush and jabbed the large end into her mouth.

Jarett is brushing Tenaya blindfolded.

Jarett brushing Tenaya's teeth blindfolded.

Halette and I getting ready for her toothpaste bath.

Halette with that crazy look on her face must be thinking I was crazy trying to shove the big end of the toothbrush in her small mouth.

Here is Don from The Puppy Raising Journey. He looks so much like his brother, Donner. Too bad he didn't show but I am glad I got to meet Don and Lauren.

After we meet Lauren and Don we walked and sat down to watch the puppies that are handed out to their new raisers on Fun Day. On the way I spotted another Halette look-alike, and sure enough it was Hana.
Halette meets Hana. Halette is on the right. You can see the toothpaste all over Halette's ear.

Here we are waiting and waiting for the puppies. I enjoyed just sitting under the big pine trees. The shade was cool and Halette loved the bark. We talked with some other puppy raisers and passed some time. Halette and Tenaya took this opportunity to catch up on some sleep.

Halette passed out.

Another shot to express how wiped out this pup was.
And look at that NICE jacket sleeve, ha no but really I'm glad I at least replaced one.

Too cute. My girls
with their toothpaste.

We waited and our wait paid off because we got to meet Lance for a quick second. It was worth it because we got to remember how excited we were to bring home our little or now big golden girl. After that we headed out for our car ride home. It was bittersweet knowing that this would be my last Fun Day with Tenaya.

This is Lance, one of the puppy's handed out at Fun Day. He was the only pup I found that is related to Tenaya all day. They share their father Mazel. Lance is from Erin and Rocco's puppy raising group. Here is Erin's blog My Time as a GDB Puppy Raiser.

Do you think they look alike?
Here is Tenaya the day we picked her up from the GDB campus last year.

Hello There!

I along with Jarett have raised 6 guide dog pups. We are currently raising pup # 7. These are our stories, our adventures, our experiences. Please follow us and watch our pups grow into their paws and from jacket into harness. Feel free to leave a comment. We enjoy hearing what you have to say.