Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Countdown Contiunes...

Well, we're into the last week of Faulkner's stay with me. Only five more days until my Nerd goes on to become something more than a goofy pup. No matter how many times I send a dog back to Guide Dogs, it never really hits me that they're gone until a couple weeks after the fact. I blame it on puppy trade. As a raiser, you get used to not having your dog for a week or so each month and I just feel like I'm sending my pup out on trade right after they leave.

But then they don't come back.

Out of all the dogs that I've raised, Faulkner is the only pup that hasn't been transferred during his raising. My first, Yamaha, came to me at 11 months. He was a wild and crazy boy. He hadn't been neutered and, coupled with his size, he was tough to handle. Baskin, my second, came to me when he was 4 months old. He had been started by a family in my club, so I got to be involved, but I still had Yamaha and didn't feel up to the challenge of overlapping. Then came Donna. I got Donna when she was about 3 months old and then offered to transfer her to a first time raiser in my club who wanted to finish a dog instead of start a puppy. So I only had her until she was 6 or 7 months old. I think that I had Chantilly, my fourth, from when she was 8 weeks until she was 5 or 6 months. And then Gene came to me at 10 months old. He was quite the challenge as he didn't even know the command "down" yet.

But Faulkner, I've gotten to see him through from the beginning. I don't know if it will make it harder to see him go, though. I have made a point of giving myself over heart and soul to each dog that comes through my home. Without that mutual unconditional love, it's a lot harder to train a dog.

My biggest challenge this coming week will be saving some love for the new puppy who will come into my life at the end of this month. I hope that Faulkner doesn't end up stealing it all away from me.


Cabana's Puppy Raiser said...

How interesting that Gene hadn't learned "down" by 10 months. Was he not taught it, or did he just refuse to do it? My fear as a first time raiser is that the trainers will say something along those lines about Cabana after she's turned in, like, "Wow, this dog doesn't even know how to do _____." Fill in the blank with whatever I didn't know I was supposed to teach her!

But even as a first timer, I am positive you will have LOTS of love ready to share with the new puppy. No doubt about it!

It will be interesting to know next week if you do find it harder to turn Faulkner in than your previous pups. Hope you enjoy your next 5 special days together!

Kate Richardson said...

From what I was told, Gene was placed with a new raiser family who just didn't crack down on obedience. I'm not sure about all the circumstances surrounding it. But I do know that Gene just didn't really know what he was supposed to do when you told him to go down. Luckily, he was a fast learner. He caught on really quickly and went on to be a Guide!

Don't worry about missing something in Cabana's training. With puppy trades, evals and monthly reports, you'll get everything. And if there's one thing that your puppy still needs to perfect, Guide Dogs will work on it.

I'm very excited about getting a new puppy and I know that I'll love it with everything that I have, but I am interested in seeing how different this recall is for me.

But Faulkner's recall date has been changed!! He's not going back until right around the 22nd now!