Meet Canine Companions puppy Poncho, named by Canine Companions corporate partner PetSmart and being raised by volunteer puppy raiser Jolie. Poncho, a black Labrador/golden retriever cross, is seven months old and has been learning basic obedience commands and socialization. Jolie says he’s a thinker and an all-around smart guy.


“Poncho loves the ‘sit’ command. He knows something fun is going to happen when he’s sitting nicely—usually it’s meeting a new person or getting a treat,” says Jolie.

The basic commands come in handy on Poncho’s outings, especially when he gets groomed or goes to the vet at his local PetSmart store. “The employees just melt when they get to bathe Poncho and the feeling is mutual!”

Jolie and Poncho love the outdoors, walking and taking in the Southern California beach scene. There are many opportunities for Poncho to show off his smarts when pelicans saunter nearby or when they ride the Harbor Cruise around San Diego Bay.

Practicing “sit”

“There are so many great moments raising Poncho,” Jolie says. “From the joy he gets from having his teeth brushed to watching him enjoy the outdoors. Having him by my side is an experience that is truly priceless.”

If your pet is interested in going to PetSmart like puppy Poncho, be sure to stop by between May 2 to July 4. They are offering special patriotic grooming and hotel packages benefiting Canine Companions’ Veterans Initiative through our partnership initiative PetSmart for Patriots.

Are you interested in becoming a puppy raiser? Click here for more information.

Click here to learn more about our corporate partnerships.

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