To All the Puppy Raisers

Hi, I’m Heartley and I just turned one on April 7. With everything going on in the world today, I thought I’d take a moment to say thank you to all the Canine Companions® volunteer puppy raisers out there. Because of you, puppies like me are continuing to find new ways to learn while we’re sheltered at home.

Practicing at Home

Thanks to my puppy raiser, Cathy, I’ve learned 30 commands and am now working on perfecting them.  I may not be able to go to restaurants, libraries or parks, but I’ve been practicing the command “under” using the deck chairs, getting used to loud and sudden sounds like the vacuum and maintaining proper manners by waiting for the “release” command before playtime.

We practice social distancing at the same time as socializing by taking rides in the car. It’s just Cathy and me, and I’m learning to not to be afraid of car rides (I love them now!) while continuing to experience new sights and sounds.

Special Day for a Special Puppy

A special thank you to Cathy for my festive birthday party, complete with a custom Build-A-Bear birthday cake and lots of streamers, balloons and bears (my favorite!). While it didn’t feel like work, I was able to practice several commands like “up,” “sit,” “wait,” and “stand,” and get in extra socialization – birthday parties can get loud!

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A Great Big Thank You

There are over 1,200 puppies ranging in age from 8 weeks to 18 months that are at home learning in new ways, just like me. To all of the volunteer puppy raisers out there, on behalf of the Canine Companions puppies everywhere, thank you for all that you do to keep us safe, loved, happy, learning and training so that we can be the best assistance dogs to someone with a disability!

Learn more about puppy raising.

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