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I am a male yellow Lab. My birth date is September 4th 2011. I am in training to be a guide dog for the blind. (guide dog school -Southeastern Guide Dogs) I'm my raiser's fifth guide dog puppy. She will keep me for (about) 1 year, then I will head off to harness training! Please feel free to follow my blog and keep up with: Brandon's Life... As a guide dog in training

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

No News... ISN'T Good News

*(Written by Rudy's Raiser)*
Most of my older followers will remember Toby, the third dog I raised for SEGDI (he went back in April 2010). I've been getting monthly report cards from the school about him. But when it got to October - I received nothing, asking my Area Coordinator, she said when they have time - they send them. But I remember always receiving them on (close to) the same day each month. I'm told "No News is Good News" but in this case.... No News is bad news...
I got a call from my Area Coordinator today - telling me she heard from the school.
I'm crossing my fingers; wishing for good news... then I hear her say
"Toby has been career changed". Yes he's out - he'll never be a guide dog.
I'm told he was let go do to severe allergy issues. BUT he isn't out of the program completely (which means he isn't just being adopted out as a pet). Toby does still have a slight chance to become a gifted canine. Though he can't become a working guide dog, the school did really like him and have decided to evaluate him for a different line of work. (could be with a veteran - or as any kind of service dog).
I wish Toby the best of luck with his evaluations, and hope he blows the people away with amazement.
I'm so sad to hear he didn't make it as a guide, knowing all those hours, days, months, I had him raising him up to be the best guide dog I could didn't work out. But knowing he does still have a slight chance of working makes me happy.
We all know, that if he doesn't make it in this program - he will get adopted out (which I did tell my area coordinator I can't adopt him, though I'd love to - we don't have the room). But even adopted out as a house pet, Toby can always change peoples lives. Just cuddling up with a family who needs a pet is helpful.

For those who have no idea what I just said up there - he's a review :)

1. Toby was just "put out" of the guide dog program due to severe allergies
2. Toby isn't being adopted out yet, as the school does really like him - and hopes he has a chance with a different career (the gifted canine program)
3. Toby will undergo some different evaluation tests, to find out if he is capable of doing a new task
4. Over the next 2-4 weeks I should be hearing some more news (I hope for good news!)

Thanks so much for following our blog, Rudy will be posting before he heads off to his puppy sitter tomorrow (as we will be heading to a dairy goat show). Just thought I'd update you on Toby,

Toby's & Rudy's Raiser
The human that has a dog with a blog

Black/white picture of Toby in harness, in a stand-stay. I'm kneeling down in front of him - and he's trying to touch my face


Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Don't furget the story of Ricochet -

Toby just didn't find his special spot YET!

Thanks fur sharing!


Ally and Eclipse said...

I'm so sorry! It's always so heartbreaking when they get career changed especially when it's medical and not because the dog doesn't Want to work! Toby will touch many many lives, he already has through you. It's okay to cry not only because he didn't "make it" but because he can't come home. You're not alone! *Hugs and golden tail wags*

Alphini's Puppy Raiser said...

I'm so sorry to hear that...I know first hand what that can feel like. I do hope Toby's allergy issues can be addressed...that was a surprise, you had no way of knowing that would come up! :-( No matter where he goes tho, he's a special boy and it's your hard work that has helped to make him that way. Sending warm thoughts and best wishes your way!!

Oskar said...

I just know Toby will find his perfect fit someday soon!

Nubbin wiggles,

Benny and Lily said...

Oh we are sorry to hear about Tobys allergies. Things are meant to be for some reason
Benny & Lily

Jazzi said...

So sorry to hear bout Toby's allergies and that he is out. Hopefully he will find a place that is just right for him and he will be of much help and give his love out!!


The Thundering Herd said...

So sorry to hear that Toby is out, but we believe he is still a very special dog and will be a huge benefit to whomever ends up being with him.

Out of curiosity, what is the "success" rate? How many dogs do not end up becoming service dogs?

Lisa, Ellie and Hosta said...

OH, such hard news to get. I'm sure he'll blow them away with his brains and love of his work.

Wilma said...

Aw, we are sorry your Toby will not be a guide dog. We will keep our fingers crossed that he makes it to being a service dog. You are right though, where ever Toby ends up, he will make a huge difference in someone's life.

Ro said...

Aw I'm so sorry to hear this. I can't imagine how disappointing that must be for a raiser. I'm sure what ever he decides to do with be the best thing for him. Man, you were the first guide dog raising blog I found after I decided to apply for a guide. Toby affected me way back then, so he's already made a difference. :)

bbes tribe said...

Could be he was meant to be doing something very special for a special someone who really needs him. Even if adopted he could help/change someone's life. He sounds like a very special pup.

the booker man said...

miss raiser,
i'm sad that you are sad. i wish i could make toby's allergies go away. :( but just cuz he's not gonna be able to be a guide doggie doesn't mean he's not gonna have an impact wherever he winds up spreadin' his love 'n talents. toby is a totally awesome doggie no matter what!

the booker man

Student Accomodation said...

Toby will definitely find his perfect fit...soon..
good wishes...:)
thanks for the share..
Student Accommodation

Raiser Erin said...

I'm sorry. That's gotta be hard. But Toby will find is people and his niche in life soon enough. He's a special dog and will go to a special person. :)

Doris Sturm said...

I'm confused! Toby has allergies and that's why he can't be a service dog? Why? Isn't there medicine for it? Oh, wait, he can be a service dog - any dog can be a service dog - what can't he do? The "program"?

Rudy - The dog with a blog said...

The question you left on my blog:
"I'm confused! Toby has allergies and that's why he can't be a service dog? Why? Isn't there medicine for it? Oh, wait, he can be a service dog - any dog can be a service dog - what can't he do? The "program"?"

I'll try to answer it!
Yes it all is very confusing, but to be a guide dog (which is what he was in training for since he was born) he has to be in the best of shape - and unless the allergies are a little side issue he will get put out. In this case (I have no idea what he's allergic to) he had very severe allergies - which I don't know if he's taken medication - as I don't ever get much info from the school!
There is other lines of work he could possibly do - he may be able to be a helping to for a veteran or something. But he wouldn't be putting a blind person's life in risk if he made a mistake due to allergies (they can side track him very easily).

Hope this helps! The school will put the dog to the best use for there health and skill - if Toby ends up not being a perfect match for the gifted canine program (being a service dog) then he will be adopted out as a pet. In the next 3-4 week I should be hearing something.

This whole program can be confusing sometimes - hope you somewhat understand what I just tried to explain, let me know if you have any other questions!

And The Thundering Herd - for your question "what is the "success" rate? How many dogs do not end up becoming service dogs?"

I don't remember off the top of my head - the success rate of SEGDI guide dogs. I do know that it was like out of 12 dogs that are returned to the school 2-4 only make it as a guide. The others ARE evaluated (if possible) for another line of work, but any dog that can't or doesn't like to work - are career changed and put as pets right away. As for what I know right now - Toby still enjoys and can work - just not as a guide.
Hope that helps!

Rudy's Raiser

Rebecca, Ely and Joe said...

I am so sorry to hear about Toby, he will do great in any job he is assigned rather that is in the gifted program or as a spoiled pet. Karen posted a great article not too long ago about the gifted program on the SEGDI blog. I know it is hard right now, but Toby will make a difference in the world one way or the other.

K9friend said...

I know one thing for sure about Toby. Whatever his future holds, you can be sure he'll be a special light in someone's life.


Anonymous said...

Oh, I'm very much sorry to hear about Toby being put out of the program. But you know what? That just means there's another special place for him in this world. Somebuddy's life is gonna be changed for the better because of Toby. I just know it!

Wiggles & Wags,

MySpecialDoggies said...

I'm sorry to read that Toby won't be a guide dog, but hopefully something is out there for him.

Paw crossed,
Nadine & Neeli
Angel doggie Apples (1994-2010)