Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Watch Holly Grow: Thirteen Months

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Volunteer puppy raisers for Canine Companions for Independence expect to have their young four-legged charges in their care for fourteen to sixteen months. For those of us who find it easier to toss out rough estimates, we have been heard to refer to this time span as just about a year and a half.

That's a long time, right? We have a lot to do over those months, to be sure. Loads of socialization and the training of thirty CCI commands. And a bit of falling in love with the puppy.

Just kidding. We adore this amazing critter. Who wouldn't?

So even though I train Holly with her destiny in mind, I don't usually start thinking about the countdown to turn-in time until somewhere after the puppy's first birthday.

Holly's matriculation to CCI's Advanced Training Program will be in November this year. 

Well, by my finger count, that's seven months from now. We have a whole summer and most of the fall season to go. Not bad. We'll keep plugging along here and see if we can reach proficiency on these commands of hers. 

And I'll just mark the calendar for another day to worry about turn-ins and the good-byes and good lucks that all go together.


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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Blossoming beauty

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The windows are open, allowing entry of the lavender's perfume from the south garden bed.

If you can get past the shoe-sucking mud season, it's actually possible to enjoy the change of wind that brings Ohio springtime.

And as our only blossoming tree, the weeping cherry is now in full swing. The thing is just gorgeous this time of year.

But it pales in beauty next to Miss Holly, amiright?

Holly isn't dazzled by the beauty of the blossoms, however. That attentive gaze is bee-lined onto a... well, that's a honey bee up there. So glad to see these critters are out and about doing their pollination work.

I captured a few adorable shots of Holly surrounded by these white blossoms and I think this one may be my favorite.









Being in a somewhat artsy mood, I ran this photo through Adobe Lightroom for some editing. A filter or two, along with a vignette gives this image a heavier, warmer feel.

Some folk prefer their images SOOC (straight out of the camera), while another may enjoy the mood coming from an altered photo.

What do you think? What is your preference ... Image #1 above or #2 below?


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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Stunt Double

raising a super dog


Take a pop over to our companion dog blog at Go. Do. Be Dog. for a product review of Lindy and Company dog treats.

Micron is asking me to update his resume. He wants to snag a job at this place. A career as a stunt double of the company's mascot, Lindy, is top of the list, what with the crazy good looks of these two goldens.

And sure, a security guard role as Keeper of the Bacon Treats is a solid career choice as well.

Maybe V.P of Canine Communications? The dog can bark your ear off if you let him.

Micron is so busy with his volunteer work, though. I really don't think he has time for a full-time job and we're not even talking about his lack of work ethic.

In the meantime, I'll distract him with a cookie or two. I think we'll go with a Peanut Butter but Better. Then it'll be his nap time.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Hero Bunnies

raising a super dog

Harvest and Holly pause in their play session to get into the bunny spirit of the season. A closer inspection of the image above will confirm that, yes indeed, that is mud on Holly's legs. But it's springtime mud, of course. Can't avoid the stuff.

How difficult is it to take a photo of two active pups wearing bunny ears, you ask. Good question. We'd say it's not too bad, really. Even on this particular blustery March day. We recommend an individual of persistent personality to be in charge of the ears and a second biped to keep a firm finger on the shutter button.

And just keep shooting until you get good enuf ...


video

Friday, March 27, 2015

Watch Holly Grow - the first year

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G'bye Puppy Kibble

www.donnasword.comHere ya go, Miss Holly, I say. Your last bowl of puppy food.

Those are not words I like to hear in the same sentence, says Holly.  Last Bowl and Food. Wait, the world is going all fizzy. I think I might faint from lack of kibble crunchies. 

Maybe we can feed her the cat, says Jager. What? Don't look at me like that. I meant cat food. Feed her cat food.

You all are misunderstanding what's going on here, I say. It's a big day for Holly.

So I get a big cat? asks Holly.

Nobody is eating the cat, I say. Cut it out. No, Holly since you're turning one year old, this is the last of your puppy food. You get adult dog kibble after this.

Actually, I say. I've been transitioning you over to your big girl food all week. Adding a few more adult kibbles into the mix each day. You didn't even notice, did you?

Yeah, I noticed, says Holly. But hey, I'm not a picky girl. If it makes a tonk-tonk sound hitting the bowl, I'll down it. It's the Way of the Retriever.

Gotcha, I say. I've learned that over the last few CCI pups. Speaking of, here's a nugget of trivia for you. Even though you're a year old, you're still a Puppy by CCI lingo. 

But I'm huge! Bigger than Jager! says Holly. Heck, I'm even bigger than the cat now. I'm not a puppy!

But you are, I say. In a word, that is. Canine Companions for Independence considers all dogs in the puppy raising program as "puppies." When you enter the Advanced Training program in November, then you'll get to be called a "dog." It's a simple way to keep everybody clear where they are in their training.

Fine, says Holly. So long as I still get something to eat around here. So, are you going to say the word or do I just sit here and drool into my bowl until I dehydrate?

Right. Let's do that, I say. Holly, OK!

[crunch crunch crunch]



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