Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Pre-Match Day

I have a very special group that I chat to every day. They are my rock, the people that I can talk to about anything. It's 5 other CCI puppy raisers and myself all in a group chat. We all live in different areas across the United States. We are all bonded by the fact that we all are involved with CCI. 

The past few weeks as Team Training was approaching I was getting more excited AND more nervous. Having gone through the Team Training Rotation Deal just 3 months ago and hearing she didn't make a match, I was nervous that this time would be the same end result. Every day my fabulous friends would listen to my excited/nervous talk.

The night of the 4th I was most nervous. The excited jitters had come and my friends who are all SO supportive were just about excited as I was for the phone call in the morning. I had trouble getting sleep  last night because when your dog is in advanced training for 9 months you miss them SO much and just want to see them really bad!! I finally got some sleep and woke up extra early. 

The minutes seemed to drag on as I sat around trying to keep myself busy until the 10 o'clock hour at which I assumed I would be called. Talking to my friends over chat, they gave me motivation and let me know that it was all going to be ok. To keep me busy my friends came up with a huge photo scavenger hunt they wanted me to do. Right as I was going to start the hunt, my Puppy Program Manager's name showed up on the phone. 

Surprisingly, all my nervousness went away as I answered the phone. I suddenly felt confident my girl had pre-matched. He then proceeded to tell me that Halo had pre-matched. My face lit up with a HUGE smile! I was so excited! Of course a pre-match is preliminary and Halo will keep working with HER person until next week. Things aren't final till graduation, but the final match call will be early next week.

Halo will always be my little girl, my first puppy I raised. I may sometimes refer to her as my girl in conversations in the future, but now Halo is HER persons girl now.How amazing is the process of puppy raising? I raised her up to help someone in need, and over 2 years of training later, she is going to be that. An AMAZING Canine Companion. I have come  up with so many scenarios of what they are doing at Team Training together. How things are working out… and I just can't wait to meet her forever person next week at graduation. ON Valentine's Day! So amazing. I will update again when I hear about her pre-match hopefully turning into a final match. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Dog With a Blog...

Hey everyone.. Spunky here.. shh.. Mom doesn't know that I am taking over her blog. She has been slacking, so I have decided to take matters into my own hands.. well, paws. Last Friday mom and I attended the Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) graduation to see the dogs from our Chapter graduate and turn in. Halo (mom's first dog), rotated through but she didn't find her forever person. Mom was sad for the first couple days, but now is doing great and is keeping her fingers crossed for a February graduation. I wonder how long I will stay at advanced training! Halo has been there for 6 months so far. I miss her, but she is going to be such a great help to someone.

Halo on Turn-In Day back in May!

At the hotel room!

Last Thursday we arrived at our hotel which was right by the CCI campus. We were staying at the same hotel as my puppy raiser's moms service dogs puppy raisers were at. Confused yet?  My Mom (puppy raiser )raises dogs AND her mom (my grandma hehe) has a service dog (Felice) because she is in a wheelchair. So we were at the same hotel as Felice's puppy raisers. That was SO much fun! It was cool seeing Felice get excited to see her puppy raiser, who she hasn't seen in about 6 months. It is super cool that my grandma keeps in contact with her dogs puppy raiser. I hope that mom gets to stay in contact with whoever Halo goes to! 
Felice getting her nails done by her puppy raiser!

The next day it was graduation day. Mom was SO excited because she got to see her best friend and fellow puppy raiser who she hadn't seen in 9 months! They have been talking over fb and follow each others blogs. She was such a nice lady, and I can see why mom likes her and her family SO much! Their dog Haddie was graduating that day, and mom and I spent the whole day with them because they live far away, and it was our only day to be with them for a while. I was so excited to get to play in the big yard.. It's my favorite reason for going to the CCI campus! It's huge and I get to run and run and run with lots of other CCI dogs. When we headed over to the ceremonial hall, mom and I sat with her friend and her family, and Haddie. It was super cool getting to watch them bring up their dog and pass over the leash. I also knew some of the other dogs graduating from my own chapter! Paisley, Cami and Shelley graduated which was super cool! I was sad to see my friends Wistar and Wilda get turned in though. :( I hope they are having fun at dog college. The blue vests are just SO cool, and I want to wear one when I get older.
Left to Right: Sheriff, Me, Sunny and Seneca (My siblings!)


Haddie giving me tips for Advanced Training

Cami seeing Mom! Giving her a goodbye kiss!

That Saturday, we left the hotel, but we hung out and went to the mall, and then a winery. It was so pretty and everyone was looking at me.. it's like I am a people magnet. Mom says something about my fluffy fur that makes even more people look at me.
I like to carry Felice's leash and take her with me wherever I go.

I LOVE minions!

I is Spunk-punzle

Paying close attention to mom 

Fountains are pretty

Ah... Buena Vista Winery

I PROMISE I will tell mom to get back onto her blogging grind. If she doesn't, don't worry.. I will blog for her...

Woofs and Kisses,

Spunky- Dog stealing her moms blog.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Wet Saturday

Friday night I was so excited for the next day. I was going to have quality time with my best friend in the morning and then late afternoon would attend our annual Canine Companions fundraiser near my house. I woke up Saturday morning to the smell of wet pavement. I knew that it was supposed to rain, but I didn't know that it would look as if I had slept through a down pour. I hoped that the rain would lift up before the end of the day because our event that evening was an outside wine tasting/car show with a concert to end the event.

Fluffy tails out by the pool in the morning

Love my girl. Came over while I was getting ready.

Spunky and I got ready to go spend the morning with my best friend, and one of Spunky's favorite people. We both have good taste in people I guess :). We headed out the door and met up with my friend to get some sushi, head to the store, and then go to the movies!

At the restaurant!

The sky was still dark and gloomy as we walked in to get lunch. When we headed over to the store I could see little rain drops begin to drop on my car windshield. Having an hour to kill before our movie, we walked around the store and checked out the Halloween decorations and costumes. Spunky is such a trooper and wore whatever we put on her. She already has her Halloween costume, but it's always good fun and good tolerance practice for the pups in training. You never know who your dog could potentially go to in the future, so I make sure my pups are ok with wearing whatever I put on them from day one.

Look closely and you can see she is wearing cat ears!

Trick or Treat!

"Mom.. Halo should have been an angel last Halloween!"

 "Time flies when you're having fun", and it was time to head over to the movies. Wind was starting to pick up as we headed to the car and I could tell it wasn't going to be good. I was worried about our event that night that had been planned for so many months and really hoped that the rain would clear up.

When we got to the movies, we were given our 3-D glasses. We headed into the theatre and sat down. For fun I put the glasses on Spunky and she actually stared at the screen during the previews. My friend and I were cracking up. Throughout the movie Spunky was very interested. She was in the "down" position, but watched most of the movie. I don't know if I was more entertained by the movie.. or the fact that Spunky was watching the movie. My first pup Halo didn't have much interest in the movies or tv, but Spunky always seems to keep an eye on the strange screen that has people in it. When the movie was over, we walked out to the lobby only to see rain POURING down outside. It was raining cats and dogs.. and even though we were having a dog event.. we didn't need them falling on our heads. Running out to the car, my friend and I said our goodbyes and my wet dog and I headed home.
Looking good there Spunks

Watching the preview with her glasses on

Rain.. Rain go away.. come again another day!

The weather started to clear up just a bit an hour later and Spunky and I headed down to see how the event was. It was small and just in one section, but people were coming and there were a few oldie cars that did show up, under tents of course. The nice cars aren't used to seeing the rain. Puppy raisers were given a scavenger hunt, where we were timed and had to go around to different store fronts around the area and practice commands. We scored our dogs on how well they did their commands and then turned back in our sheets when we were done. Spunky and I are still awaiting the announcement of the winners.
Puppies in Training France and Spunky

Even through the rain, which cleared up for most of the event, may have changed the expectation of the event, it was still a good time. I got to chat with my fellow puppy raiser friends *aka moms* and have a nice evening. We all headed for dinner as the event was coming to a close and chatted up some more there. Even though the evening didn't go as we all had planned, I still got to enjoy an awesome Saturday filled with friends and laughs.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

2013 DogFest Walk 'n Roll Santa Rosa

Monica's Personal Page for 2013 DogFest Walk 'n Roll Santa Rosa    click here to donate please!!!!!

Hey there everyone...On September 29th I will be walking in the DogFest Walk 'n Roll in Santa Rosa for Canine Companions for Independence. I would absolutely love it if you could help, by donating to my page. All the proceeds that you donate go to Canine Companions for Independence and help improve peoples lives. Any little bit helps and is so appreciated. You donate.. and I will do the walking. It is that simple!

Here is the excerpt from my page on the website....

I’m walking in Canine Companions DogFest Walk ‘n Roll because I love dogs, and I believe in Canine Companions for Independence. I got involved with the organization because my mom received her service dog, Felice, who has changed her life and our whole families life. My 2nd CCI puppy- in -training Spunky, and I will join other dogs and their owners for a day of fun and festivities. Leading up to the event we’re raising money to support Canine Companions. The impact they make on the lives of people with disabilities is incredible. Help me get to my fundraising goal by donating online. If you do the giving, I’ll do the walking so we can get more of these amazing Canine Companions assistance dogs into the lives of those who need them. Just click the "Give Now" button at the top of this page. Thanks for your support!


Monica and Spunky

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Chalk n' Trains

I could tell you the reason I haven't updated in forever is because I have had a busy summer, college has started and so many other "reasons".. but the fact is.. I haven't blogged... and my lovely friend who I have grown so close to.. even just over text... reminded me that I need to BLOG! So here I am.. coming back to my poor neglected blog that I always have so many intentions of updating weekly.

Today there was an event in Sacramento called Chalk it Up. Spunky and I got into the car and drove into the city... which I don't travel to by myself often. I did need some help finding my way from my friend who was already there.. after I figured I needed help after traveling down some one way streets that were taking me further and further away from the event. We got to the event which was at a park where people pay for a spot to display their artwork on the sidewalk.. and the proceeds go to charity. One of my puppy raiser friends daughter was the one participating in the event.. was drawing CCI dogs. It turned out really cute and she is going back to finish it tomorrow. She did a really nice job. While other puppy raisers and myself were watching her draw.. we hung around with the dogs.. getting oohs and awws about how cute our pups were. After being there for a few hours Spunk and I were getting hot and headed back to the car... which we may have gotten a little turned around on the walk back too hehe.
Working on the artwork

COC-Lucinda and Skilled Companion- Wuest 

Breeder- Sabina :)

Fluffy Spunks!

How the artwork was looking when Spunky and I headed out

Hearing Dog Jonesy

I've been really into taking  photos lately... and so even though it was really hot out for the both of us.. we stopped at old historic Folsom to take some pictures on the way home. The train history place was open so we stopped by in there for a couple quick shots. We didn't get too far because Spunky wasn't into cooperating for my photo taking idea. I like the way a few of them came out though. :) I just can't stop taking pictures of my cutie. We will have to go back again soon when it's not as hot.

Always Squinting.. silly Golden

checking out gold panning

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Taken Too Soon...In Memory of Thompson III

There are quite a few people that I have become very close to since I have started puppy raising. They are the people that I wouldn't want anything to happen to them. They are my second family and I would do anything for them.

Tuesday afternoon I finished work, got in my car and did my usual checking of my phone. I got a text from my friend Laura.. and I read that her puppy in training, Thompson had passed away. My stomach fell and I burst into tears. She called me and filled me in on the accident. He had passed away because of a pool accident. I don't want to go into too much detail, but in the end, they had done everything they could by taking him to the vet, and the little fighter who was pushing through with all his might, was in the best hands if he went to rainbow bridge.

I was just with him two nights ago, and the co-puppy raisers are the last people that you would ever want to hear that this would happen to. I wouldn't ever want this to happen to anyone in fact. I am writing this post in memory of little Thompson, and to give awareness to people who have a pool that they let their dogs swim in or that they have taken their dog to swim in. Please keep an eye on him/her.
Accidents happen, and all that we can do at this point is learn from it.

Rest in Peace little buddy.. I Love You.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Ice Cream Puppies!

Tonight our local GRC (Gold Rush Champions) had an ice cream social at an amazing food and ice cream parlor called Leatherby's.
"Hi, I'm Spunky.. want some ice cream?!"

Felice, Service Dog, driving the Ice Cream Cart

Spunky and I already had a busy day after she had her first experience at the gym, then attended a movie, but we were both up for going and visiting our buddies to get some ice cream (yes I know.. I went to the gym... but I was working off my calories so I could eat it.. well that's what I tell myself).

We had a large group of us at dinner (35 +), and we all took up two long tables. My favorite part had to be all the tiny pups attending dinner..It was nice to get a baby puppy fix. Little Thompson, Froomin and France were there for me to cuddle with. 

Baby France..She made me want a black puppy so bad!
Silly Froomin 
My mom and I sat with our friends Wendy, Dave, Mark and Debbie. Our other friends were there too but they weren't sitting near us.. so we didn't get a chance to talk. We ordered our dinner and chatted with everyone, and I held the baby puppies! When our dinner and ice cream arrived, I had to snap a picture of it with my new pal for the next few months, Flat Stanley. He is visiting with Spunky and me to attend our vacations.. which we will report back to an Alzheimer's facility who colored the Stanley's for us with our photos about once a week. The lady who works there has a Facility dog through CCI and graduated in May 2011 with my mom! She has become good friends with our family.

Don't eat it all Stanley!

Puppy Photo Bomb!!!!! Appearance by Thompson

It was a great outing and an awesome chance to visit with friends. I can't wait for the next social outing. )