Last night Amy and I were invited to Chicago's Peninsula Hotel for Canine Companions fundraiser, Haute Dog Chicago, where Amy was the graduate speaker. While there, Amy shared her story and I got to show how important it can be to pick up a piece of paper without putting holes in it. It was a long, fun night. I was just glad I didn't have to put on the clothes and walk the runway! ;)
This Afternoon Amy & I went to the Auto Show,representing CCI as part of the 2017 Chrysler/Braun and Canine Companions for Independence, Drive Independence. Give a Dog a Job, Campaign. Here I am with Amy, 7 mo. old Puppy in Training Ferdinand, my new fans, and the Toyota Cub Car. Amy didn't like the traffic or the huge crowd, but she liked speaking with the people who stopped by to see us and I loved the attention I got.
This was our fourth visit to Wolf's Crossing Elementary, but Amy has been coming for at least four years, maybe longer. She always enjoys teaching the fifth grade about Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) and how they breed, raise and train Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers or crosses of the two, to become assistance dogs. The students got to see how I help Amy be more independent in her daily life. They saw me retrieve my leash, keys, a piece of paper, a credit card. She also spoke about the many ways I help her around the house. She talked about how I help her get out of the couch, how I retrieve the phone and she showed how I help with the laundry by tugging the class lunch bin. She also demonstrated how I can fit under tables, turn on/off the light and speak on command when she needs to summon help and no one's around. We always look forward to our visits and can't wait to come back in the spring at the conclusion of the Change for Change program!
Today I met my brother Pablo. I'd like to say that I remembered him, but the truth is, I'm not sure. There's no evidence to suggest that canine siblings remember each other. I know this because Amy looked it up. I also know that littermates who are together from thee-16 weeks of age have a greater chance of recognizing each other. Since Pablo and I were separated at eight weeks of age, it’s hard to say what we remember. But dogs don’t think in terms of family roles i.e. mother, father anyway, instead, we rely on our sense of smell to tell us where we belong among the pack we are with.
Even though I may not have remembered Pablo I was still excited to see him and his humans. Amy was also excited to meet Chelsea and learn about the similarities and differences between the siblings. For example, Pablo and I love ice cubes but we hate to swim. We also hate to play fetch but we love to run and as you’ll see my brother is much faster than me. We also like to use stuffed animals as our security blankets and we love to be as close to our humans as possible leaning on them and even sitting on their feet. Furthermore, we both do a sloppy sit, but I do it all the time and Pablo only does it when he’s not being asked to “Sit.” I’m sure there are other similarities/differences that Amy has forgotten to tell me, but that's all she can remember. “Can you think of anything else Chelsea?”
Amy and I had the pleasure of presenting to Three Fires Council, Boy Scouts of America Cub Scout Pack 312 at Freeman tonight! Helping them earn their Aware & Care Badge. She spoke to about 15-20 adults and scouts and shared with her audience how she is like them in some ways, but different in other ways. She shared how she can waterski and walk, but how she can't drive. To fulfill the badge requirement Amy also shared all about Canine Companions for Independence from the breeding, raising and training process to the placement with a recipient. She also did a mini demonstration of my retrieval skills and showed them how I can "speak" on command. For more information on the things I'm trained to help Amy do, visit our about us page. For information on how you can help Canine Companions visit our become involved page.
In part I of this video, Amy shares a little bit about herself. In this part, you'll see almost everything that I help Amy do. from retrieving to carrying and tugging. For more about my skills visit the About Us page. Near the end of the video, you'll hear Amy's voice, that's because part of the presentation didn't record. Amy also plugs her book at the end of the presentation, if you haven't read it yet, I suggest you do. For someone who has never published anything besides this blog, "Making Independence Happen," is quite good (and I'm not just saying that because she is typing this)!