As the day approaches when the E Litter puppies will be brought to their nearest Canine Companions training center for professional training, it’s on our minds about the people they might be matched with.

There are many things to think about when our trainers evaluate the dogs for placement. From the temperament of the dog to the type of tasks the dog will be expected to perform, so much is taken into consideration when matching one of our assistance dogs to a person with a disability.

We asked the E Litter volunteer puppy raisers what qualities they see in the puppies. What traits do the pups possess that will make them a perfect match. Here’s what they had to say…

Emma at the library

“Emma has attended the local library one hour a week for children to read to her. She is great with visitors and loves the kids. At her young age, she really seems to understand and connect.”

Everett and his pal

“Since Everett comes to work each day, he is very comfortable around new people and has developed his normal patterns in our office environment. Everett is definitely a ‘snow dog’ and absolutely loves running, playing and burrowing in the snow.”

Ella taking on new tasks

“Ella takes on challenges and is a dedicated pup! She likes an adventure and loves visiting the ski hills and hiking through the snowy trails.”

Elmo and his big heart

“Elmo is so patient and attentive. He loves to be by my side and seems to always want to ‘please’. Although he definitely loves his food, he eagerly accepts warm praise as a reward for his good behavior.”

Euka is a thinker!

“Euka is always aware of her handler and watches for what she should be doing. She just loves people and wants to interact, but she waits for me to let her know when it’s ok to shake hands with the folk she meets. Her manners in public are just perfect.”

Emily and her pal

“Emily is the most patient dog. She has been dressed up, combed through, snuggled with, read to, and constantly doted on by my daughter. She is an amazing dog! We could see her being a facility dog at a children’s hospital or working as a skilled companion for a child with a disability.”

Ethan shares his devotion

“Ethan is wonderfully attentive—locks those big brown eyes on his person, eager to anticipate a command. He is calm and patient. It’s so easy to imagine him alert but at rest alongside a wheelchair. And this boy is big and strong, just the guy to become a “puller!” Underneath it all is the sweetest personality ever. A child with a disability would adore being adored by this big-hearted boy.”

Eliza’s look of love

“Eliza is very attentive to me; she is constantly by my side. When we are training she has the MOST intent stare at me. Sometimes when it is time to eat and I am not getting to the food quick enough, she will nudge me with her nose. Don’t tell the other pups we’ve raised, but she is the smartest one yet!”

So many great qualities and temperaments! But did you know that even with all the characteristics and criteria that need to be considered, sometimes it’s the chemistry between the person and the dog that makes the match? There are moments when the trainers can see the connection immediately and they just know it’s right. Great dogs, great people and great trainers!

We will keep you posted on the progress of this amazing group of dogs. Their journey to extraordinary continues.

As always, thank you for following the E Litter!

Learn more about becoming a volunteer puppy raiser.

Donate to Canine Companions for Independence.

7 thoughts on “Qualities for a Quality Match

  1. Thank you for posting these wonderful pictures. I have been following the "E" litter since day 1. They are all precious…absolutely precious…  On 02/18/14, "Help is a Four-Legged Word™"<> wrotel:  Canine Companions for Independence posted: "As the day approaches when the E Litter puppies will be brought to their nearest Canine Companions training center for professional training, it’s on our minds about the people they might be matched with.There are many things to think about when our t"

  2. I have a question: in the picture, is Ella on an escalator or moving walkway? I thought those were hazardous to doggy feet! But it doesn’t quite look like a stairway, either. Can you elucidate on this? Thanks so much. Kind regards, Mary Lichlyter (Yan’s PR)

      1. So, it is ok for puppy raisers to take the pups on moving walkways? I am under the same impression as Mary Lichlyter, that we were not allowed to take pups on moving walkways or escalators due to the risks of getting paws caught.

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