Raising a miracle.....

Stinson II (1/24/12 Celine II x Oz III), a Golden Retriever/Labrador cross.

Stinson's age.....

PitaPata Dog tickers

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Been a busy 8 weeks!

I've been remiss in posting to Stinson's blog, as I promised myself to do (this time).  Well, you know.  Life with 3 dogs, 5 cockatoos, an Amazon, a small business, and a job, gets busy and all!

Our first COC guide dog puppy, Tiller (now 8), injured her cranial cruciate ligament (center of the knee) about a month ago.  We tried the wait-and-see method as opposed to surgery and began to see some improvement over the next several weeks.  She took a turn for the worse one day last week and had surgery to repair the fully torn ligament on Friday.   To illustrate:

So, while she is recovering here at home, Duchess (our second COC guide dog puppy, now 5) is staying with one CCI friend/puppy (Heather & Naylor) and Stinson is staying with another CCI friend/puppy (Linda & Sorley) for the next several days.  It's terribly quiet around here and I miss Stinson & Duchess, but the Orthopedic Veterinarian indicated the success rate for multi-dog households was much lower for this surgery.  

Thankfully, our friend Linda and CCI Puppy Sorley were available to take Stinson for awhile.  He's been there 2 days and already been to a high school football game (open, metal steps! and a cannon!) & church, as well as several restaurants.  Great exposures. 

A shot of Stinson the day before I dropped him at Linda's, being a bad boy in the car - sometimes he jumps up on the seat before I have a chance to get around the car to let him out.  We had been working on this, but still need work, apparently!

No, I'm not going to leave you, Stinson!

Last week, brand new CCI Puppy Naylor came over for a play date with Stinson.  They adore each other and love to play - constantly.

Naylor: What are we doing now, Stinson?

                                                                                        Long, hard nap, after several hours of playing together - Naylor is snuggled under Stinson's chin.

A quick email from Heather indicating she LOVES Duchess, along with a picture of 'The Queen' sleeping in Heather's bed.  She slept in bed, one paw on Heather, all night long.  That little stinker worms her way into everyone's heart. 
Snoozing on the bed at Heather's...making herself right at home. 

Things are very quiet here now - at least for the next several days.  Duchess will be back home, with 11 week old CCI Puppy Naylor, for several days late this week as I puppy sit for Heather.  CCI folks are like that - stepping up when needed without hesitation.  Just love this bunch of people.

One last shot of Stinson, creatively stretching into Tiller, before her surgery.  She just barely tolerates such contact, but she's nice about it.

Um, pardon me.  

So, Stinson turned 7 months old this week and we're just a year away from his return to Advanced Training at CCI in Orlando.  It will be here in a flash and I'll be stunned, as always - shocked that I didn't pay closer attention to how much time was passing, again. Sternly admonishing myself that I didn't post to the blog every two weeks, as planned.  And, that I didn't take enough great photos for the Matriculation Ceremony slide show.  And, that I should have done more, gone more places, 'proofed' him more on all of his commands, hugged him more, let him kiss me more and taken more time to slow down and really take it all in.  I'm going to try to remember that, this time.

Friday, June 22, 2012

18 wks. & still growing!

 Stinson and I visited a friend's law office 2 wks. ago - he was fascinated by the view from the 11th floor.

Nice 'down' in the lobby, next to a big water feature with fountain.
Stinson always sleeps well after we've worked - he loves this corner of the bedroom, behind my chair.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

16 Weeks - 40 lbs. - Big boy shots!

Getting his final puppy vaccines at Sarasota Animal Hospital - he was very brave!

 Very tired boy, love the lip.

 He's so good when we're out 'working'.

Not so good when I turn my back for a minute in the backyard, digging a hole!

15 weeks - 36 lbs.!

 Tiller, Duchess & Stinson - with REALLY tasty treats on their paws.  Good puppies!
At STAR Puppy Obedience recess with Bosley - King of the Hill!
 My sweet boy put himself down for a nap.
 Watching bird TV from the kitchen - he loves this.
This was too funny not to post - he loves the cold marble floor....

14 weeks - a little beefcake!

 Stinson is beginning to pose to the camera....
A little beat-down at puppy obedience class, but a gentle one.

13 weeks, Puppy Sleepover

 Stinson had a sleepover at PR Heather/Paco's house, 
looking up to his well behaved older buddy. 
Stinson wanted to go in the kennel with his buddy, Marley, at Heather's.
And, made friends with their kitty - a dog loving cat, lucky for Stinson!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Must run. Must run. MUST RUN NOW!

 No caption necessary, just pure joy.
Little bear paws...
....and a sweet face with really long whiskers!

Off to the Stratton's....fountain?

Stinson had a weekend at 'camp' with the Strattons and CCI Puppy Fredo.  He fell completely in love with the large urn fountain in their backyard - nice cool water for a perpetually hot puppy. 
 Nummy, nummy, nummy!
Mine, ALL mine!  Cold, wet rocks.  YAY!
 Can I just live here, please?
 Pretty, pretty please?
Great place for a nap - the water trickling over the side of the fountain keeping him cool.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

and the winner is.....Stinson!

One week until I receive my shiny (well, not really shiny), new 8 week old Golden Retriever/Labrador cross Canine Companions for Independence service puppy in training - Stinson.  Apparently named after a beautiful beach in the area where all CCI puppies are bred and whelped, Southern California and, coincidentally, the surname of a puppy raiser 'extraordinaire' deserving of a namesake from the comments I've seen.  A wonderful photographer, Douglas Bawden, donating time and services to CCI, has been taking photos of Stinson's litter from the beginning, lucky for me!  http://douglasbawdenphotography.wordpress.com/ - there are three posts to date with photos.  Stinson is in the group photo with his mama, Celine, about 1/2 way down the page - the caption points him out.  And, some photos from the Breeder/Caretaker, Ann.....
Scout atop Stinson, snoozing...

What a face!

Scout, Stinson, Sam, Simba, Sorbet

Stinson & older sibling,  Talura

It really IS 'like a box of chocolates'.....you wonder - will he be calm or excitable, quiet or vocal, slow or quick (pace, not brain!), big or small, long-coated or short-coated.....and so many other things running through your mind.  All the teachable moments ahead.  All the things you've learned from the puppies you've raised and what other raisers have taught you.  All the things you don't want to forget.  But, especially you learn to cherish each one as an individual, and the time you have with them.  Because, all too soon, they'll be off to advanced training, breaking your heart.  And, you'll be welcoming a brand new puppy into your life, easing the pain, mending your broken heart - and making it even larger with each one. 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Finding his bliss....

Chewy's journey to becoming a Service Dog ended in January as he was unable to overcome his issues with stairs, and surfaces were becoming a problem, too.  A long time business acquaintance applied for, and permanently adopted, Chewy.  He's living in St. Petersburg, FL with Doug and his four children (ages 9-14) - a very active family that lives on a canal with a pool and a boat!  I visited Chewy in February - very bittersweet.  It was the first time I'd seen him since turn-in last May.  He looks wonderful and happy and while it was very difficult to leave him, again, he's in the perfect home.  Lucky for me, I have an open invitation to visit!
 After a play session with Fredo (CCI puppy) running around the pool and yard, Chewy flopped down and just looked at me.  I still miss this boy.
Even so, after almost a year off from raising, I'm really looking forward to my next CCI puppy - hopefully within the next month.  More to come.......