Fall – apple picking, leaves changing colors, pumpkins, costume parties and spending time outside, Buckeye wanted to experience it all. What better way to celebrate fall, then by spending some time making new friends and practicing his commands in many fun places.

It is important for assistance dogs to be comfortable in every situation, so practicing commands in new environments is crucial for Canine Companions® puppies and it can be a lot of fun too!

This fall, Buckeye got to visit a farm. There he practiced the commands “up” and “down” on different surfaces and he worked on walking nicely on a leash, which can be a challenge when there are so many intriguing smells around. The highlight of Buckeye’s trip was meeting his two new horse friends, Wendy and Shannon. Buckeye loved interacting with them, watching them and even wanted to try grazing like they did!

Buckeye also celebrated his first Halloween at a party with his puppy class friends. Not only did he work on commands in a new environment, but he did it while wearing his Halloween costume, an NBC turkey of course! Not only is practicing commands in a costume adorable, but it’s also beneficial to training. Asking puppies to perform commands in new environments and with new distractions will help “proof” the command to ensure the puppy can complete the task asked, despite the environment.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Canine Companions is excited to be partnering with NBC4 to share Buckeye’s journey on his way to becoming an assistance dog. Stay tuned as Buckeye joins the NBC4 team on-air and at events in throughout their community.

To keep up with Buckeye, you can follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Learn more about puppy raising and how you can get involved.