About Me

My photo
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

My Furry Friends! (Feel free to join the pack!)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Another Day??

Yep!
I offered to keep Tracker another day (or 2) if they (my neighbors) needed. It seems that Tracker is a "little" bit of a handful for a person who just had back surgery, so he came over this morning. (Liberty was quite happy!) and spent all day with me!

I'm loving how housebroken he is, and of course, how well he listens.
(I'm thinking... future guide dog?? Joking:) But he is smart enough for one!)

He's a great dog, and I'm so happy I get my "puppy fix" AND get a chance with "puppy training" before my new little one arrives :) (It's kind of like a "refresher course"!)

Tracker is a cutie, which makes for great pictures...
So enjoy the pictures (AND movies) below!

Toby's Raiser & Tracker's Sitter
The human sometimes with a dog that has a blog

Picture of Tracker sleeping on a LARGE dog bed
Was going to be a really nice (and cute) picture of just Tracker - 'til Liberty stuck he big head in the right side - the picture is focused on Tracker though






Cute picture taken of Tracker's face - the camera worked opposite of what I wanted though - it tried to blur out Tracker's face... and make the background nice! He's still quite cute though :)


Black/white picture of Tracker's face (side view)














video


(Movies of Tracker "attacking" Liberty... he may think he's winning - but Liberty is still bigger!)

video

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

SEE MY NEW PUPPY!!

Want to??

The school my new puppy is coming from has a website. On that website they have a puppy cam, and on that puppy cam... they have MY PUPPY!

Every couple days the school posts new videos of different puppy litters, today's movie... has 8 black Goldadors (one of which is MINE!).

Please make sure to check out this site and watch the short video!

Also... Want to see a picture of my puppy? (better than the ones I got when I was down in FL).
The school posts pictures of the litters born their.

Go to their puppy photo page - and the first litter picture (all black pups - parents are Ginger & Jake) and see the cute puppies... one of them will be in my arms next month!
Or... just look below, as I put the picture in this post too :)

Don't forget to look at the Wordless Wednesday post I did earlier today.

(I normally only do a post a day - but since they change the puppy movies on the site every couple days, I didn't want you to miss seeing "my" puppy!)

Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog


Very cute photo of 8 black puppies in a basket - one is mine... I just don't know which one!



Which one is mine... ??

Wordless Wednesday

(Taken April 5th)
Picture of Toby sleeping, close up of his sweet face
Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog

Monday, April 26, 2010

He's Here!

Remember the "new puppy" I would get on May 19th?
HE CAME TODAY!

Tracker showed up this morning at 8am, he's the cutest 8 week old pup I've ever seen!
I introduced him to the guide dog coat, took him on some puppy outings, then brought him back home to rest.

Oh wait... this "new puppy" isn't mine... he's not even in training to be a guide dog...

Sorry, had to trick you guys!

Tracker is a 8 week old Black Mouth Cur puppy. My neighbors just got him last Friday.
He came right when the owner was scheduled to have back surgery, so I offered to watch him.

She's having the back surgery today, so Tracker came over this morning. I will keep him all day today and tomorrow, FUN!!
I also plan on helping out with Tracker over the next couple weeks (before my new puppy comes), so you guys may be seeing a lot of cute puppy pictures!
Toby's Raiser & Trackers Sitter
The human with a dog (for now!) that has a blog

Cute photo of Tracker, it's taken at his eye level.  He is a cream colored dog with a black mouth - who is VERY CUTE!
Photo taken at Trackers eye level, Tracker is playing with a orange rubber toy



Picture of Tracker in a down with Liberty standing over him - he looks like a mini Liberty!




Picture of Tracker snuggled up on his bed





Photo taken above Tracker, he is playing with Toby's toys - and enjoying it!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Last Times - Shopping

Toby was a dog who loved shopping. No matter how long you took at any store, he was perfectly fine with it, always made himself comfy too!
In a consignment store, I may put him in a down-stay and I'll go shop around, Toby will never move, even when little children come upon him!

Shopping at the mall was fun for him also (though he would have rather me stay at a clothes rack longer than 2 sec!). He enjoyed going in dressing rooms with me, even letting me know which outfit he liked.
He also enjoyed grocery stores, never having any issues with trying to eat things off the floor either :)
All in all he was a GREAT dog to take shopping!
I don't really take many pictures while shopping - but the 4 photos below were the last "shopping" photos I had (taken April 5th 2010).
Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog

Picture of Toby in a down-stay (sleeping!) under a clothes rack
Picture of Toby wearing his coat in a sit-stay beside the consignment store owner (who is wearing jeans & a green shirt)
Picture of Toby in coat looking at orange juice jugs in a store
Such a hard choice!
Picture of Toby in coat, looking back at me
Waiting for a command - my good boy!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Good Luck Toby!

*(No, I have not received any news about Toby)*
In the pictures below each and every one of those clovers are FOUR (or FIVE) leaf clovers.
I picked them all for Toby :)

I plan on pressing each one, framing some, then (IF) I get to see him graduate I will bring his new owner the framed 4 leaf clovers.
I'd like to wish Toby the best of luck - I have enough 4 leaf clovers to do that!
I do have many more pictures of "last times" with Toby, and will be posting them over the next 3 weeks :)
Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog
Close up picture of my 4 leaf clovers in the vasePicture of 20+, 4 (and 5) leaf clovers spread out on the table

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

(almost) Wordless Wednesday

Picture of Toby and I in front of our bank, on the wall it says Wachovia. This is Toby's last time at our bank. Toby is in a sit wearing his coat

This was Toby's last outing at the bank, the photo was taken April 9th 2010.

As of today I've been 1 week without Toby. It's hard, not just because I don't have him anymore, but I have to wait. Waiting is just plan hard.
Toby could either choose a "career" as a guide dog, or get adopted out as a pet.
Either way, he's still my baby. Good luck Toby!

Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Memory "Award"

A while back on one of Toby's posts, Lola left an interesting comment -

"Ummmm, this might be too much to ask, but Toby, do you think your Raiser would let us have a picture of the pawprints to put in a special place on our blogs if we want to. I want to have a page for special things and it would be extra special to have a remembrance of you when you're off to your new life. I haven't known you long, but I will most definitely miss you"

After reading that comment, I realized what a wonderful idea Lola had.

I've decided to call Toby's paw print stepping stone a "Memory Award" and would like to pass it on to ALL of my followers & friends.

You can put it on your sidebar, include it in a post, or do both :)

I would love for Toby's furry friends to take this award and pass it on to all their friends, keeping the memory alive.

If you would like to post about this award, I only ask that you include this 1 "rule" along with the picture -

1. One way you keep memories?

My answer - paw print stepping stone or pictures. (Yes, it's 2 - but I love doing both!)

Whether or not you are wanting to post about it or save it on your sidebar, Toby would be so happy!

Thanks to Lola for this wonderful idea!

Please feel free to expect Toby's "Award"


Toby's Raiser

The human without a dog that has a blog



A picture of Toby's paw print stone. It says April 10 (2010). And has Toby's name spelled out in rocks

Sunday, April 18, 2010

And the Winner is...

Comment number 39!!
Congrats Ro on winning Toby's giveaway (my homemade goat milk soap - dog style)!
I was surprised at how many entries I had - 58!
I wrote 1-58 numbers down on a piece of paper, cut them up, then put them in Toby's dog bowl.
After mixing them up, I closed my eyes & grabbed a random number... pulling out #39!
Ro is a current reader of my blog (and has been since last year), and just received her first guide dog in February!
Congratulations Ro, I'll be talking to you soon :)
Funny how in her winning comment it said "though I never win anything", looks like she just did!
I'm off to go find out if I've won any giveaways, thanks all for entering my giveaway, if you didn't get a chance to see the prizes just pop over to Toby's giveaway post and check out the dog soaps! (for humans).

Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog






Picture of Ro's comment on Toby's giveaway post, to the side I'm holding up the winning number - 39


Picture of all the numbers in Toby's dog bowl


Picture of all the numbers on the piece of paper, not yet cut





video



(Movie of me picking the winner. It's a little shaky, as I had my eyes closed!)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Picture Post (and last chance to enter giveaway!)

Today's post will be pictures... lots and lots of pictures.
In this post you will see all the pictures taken on the way down to FL, in FL, and even the last couple pictures taken of Toby.

I really wanted to put off picture posts for a while... I don't care to look back at the last pictures I took of Toby, but I made myself. I really miss him.

Looking at those pictures reminds me of him, no I don't remember a cute little cuddly puppy. I remember a huge, strong, playful, annoying, handsome, obedient, fun looking dog... which was Toby.
At times he may have gotten "on my nerve" but in the end we both loved each other :)
He was my big baby!
Enjoy the pictures.

If there is another dog besides Toby in any of the pictures below, it will be 1 (or both) of his siblings. Cassie is the yellow lab, Duchess is the black lab, and Toby is... Toby!

****Today is the LAST DAY to enter Toby's giveaway. I will do a drawing tomorrow sometime & post the winner. If you haven't already PLEASE enter, just go to his giveaway post & leave a comment!****



More pictures coming soon, enjoy these for now! (I tried posting them in order... but that didn't work out, sorry!)

Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog



Black/white picture of Cassie, Duchess & Toby in front of the SEGDI stone


Picture of Cassie (+ Raiser), Duchess (+ handler) & Toby (+ me!) in front of the SEGDI sign














Black/white picture of Toby & I with the SEGDI sign - this is the LAST picture I have of both of us. Note, the shirt I'm wearing is the same one I wore when I first met TobyPicture of Ginger (Yellow Golden Retriever) with her black puppies


















Sorry that the pictures of the puppies look so bad. They were taken through a glass window with a teenage girl in tears (we looked at the puppies after handing over Toby).

The puppies were very cute, you really can't tell anything from the pictures though.

Close up of the cute black goldador puppies


Close up black/white picture of Toby's face. He is in the car and this is his last ride with us(we were on the way to the school)

Picture of Toby, Duchess & Cassie in coat, in a sit-stay on the beach. You can see the water behind them


Picture of Toby & I on the beach, Toby is in a sit-stay wearing his coat. (also note that the shirt I'm wearing is the same one as when I first met Toby

Picture of Toby in a down-stay wearing his coat on the beach. You can see the water in front of him

Close up picture of Toby's sandy nose!














Picture of Toby eating his food - this was his last feeding with me
Picture of Toby sleeping inside Pizza hut, in the right corner you can see the Pizza hut sign

















All 3 dogs in Pizza hut (we are waiting on our pizza). Cassie is in a down, Duchess is sitting & Toby is in a down

Close up of the pepperoni pizza we got.  This was MY last supper with Toby












Picture of all 3 dogs in coat, in a down, in our hotel room


Picture of all 3 dogs sleeping together in the car

















Picture of Toby & I with the Welcome To Florida sign. Toby is in a sit in coat

Picture of Toby in a down-stay inside Wendy's. He is beside Duchess and Cassie is behind him

















Picture of my Frosty in front of Toby (No I wasn't teasing him - that was my LAST frosty with Toby)
Picture of Toby & I with Duchess & Cassie (and their handlers)




Picture of Toby & Cassie in the car - both sleeping


Picture of Cassie and Toby playing.  Cassie is on the right & Toby is on the left

Friday, April 16, 2010

What's it like with 3 dogs in a car... all the way to FL?

Wild, Crazy, Fun, Interesting, Wild...

Monday night Cassie (Toby's sister), her Raiser and her Raiser's sister showed up.
They spent the night at our house, then the next morning we headed down to FL.
We made a "quick" stop to pick up Duchess (Toby's other sister).
Then with 2 female dogs in a car with 1 INTACT male we continued on :)

For the first 20 minutes it was 3 young dogs trying to play... with no space. Once they realized it would be more comfortable for ALL of us if they just laid down - they decided that was the better deal.
I brought 5 sterile dog bones for the trip down (for the dogs... not us!). And for some reason 1 dog always ended up with ZERO bones to chew on??
After about 5 hours of driving Toby got fed up with the "girls" stealing all the space. He decided there was MUCH more room somewhere else... on my lap. Yes, he crawled on to my lap and fell asleep!
Of course it didn't last long, I told him "off" and he went back on the ground with the "Space stealing" girls.

I remember when we stopped for lunch - taking 3 dogs out of the car, giving them a restroom break, then coating them up and heading inside.
I've had some people stare at me before thinking I was blind - but with 3 dogs in a restaurant... we got a LOT more looks!

Toby was perfect, not one bit dog distracted like I totally thought he would be.
He even did a down-stay beside his siblings PLUS ignoring them!

While in the car the dogs did have their "moments". All would be fine, 3 dogs sleeping at our feet. Then all of a sudden they all decide to jump up and start chasing each other, we calmed them down real quick!

All in all the car ride was quite "fun" and I really enjoyed having some other dogs with us.

My camera was in my hand for the entire trip... so yes the card is quite full!

Tuesday night was quite fun. 3 dogs in a hotel room! All who listened quite well (yes I was surprised!).

Wednesday morning we finished breakfast rather quickly, with 2 hours to spare we decided to visit the beach. (Toby's never been!)

Since it was a "no dog" beach we had to be careful (guide dogs in training are allowed on - but people do have problems sometimes).

I really wanted to let Toby play in the water... but we forget to bring towels!
We spent about 30 minutes on the beach taking photos :)

Still having time to kill, we went downtown to walk the dogs.
While on the walk we saw across the street a dog... in harness... working with a SEGDI trainer!

That was really neat watching them work - thinking Toby might be doing that in a couple months!

All to soon the time came... for us to head on over the the guide dog school.

Before "turn in" we took pictures with the SEGDI stone. Then I had an appointment with the lady in charge of the gift shop. I planned on showing her my dog & dog bone goat milk soap (same style as the giveaway is for).
She really liked them and decided to try them in the gift shop!

Of course once we finished with the soaps it was time... to turn him in, it was time... to say goodbye.

I don't think a single puppy raiser could ever turn in a dog WITHOUT crying. Goodbyes are hard and it doesn't make it any easier knowing that you may never see him/her again.


After Toby "left" we headed over to the puppy kennel to look at... PUPPIES!

There wasn't any puppies old enough for "puppy hugging", but I did get to peak in Ginger's kennel and see her cute black goldador pups... knowing one of those fluff balls will be mine in one month!

Heading back home without any dogs was hard, but we did make it.

Making a couple stops on the way, while inside I may have used "find the door" for entering and exiting. Yes, some people looked, wondering why in the world I would tell MYSELF "Find the door"?

I have lots of pictures of the trip down and many from "last things" with Toby.
I plan on posting them all through time before the new puppy gets here.

Thank you for following this blog and leaving comments on the way. I really appreciated reading all the wonderful comments from you guys on the last couple posts - thank you!
Pictures coming soon,


Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Goodbye Is Never Easy

I may have raised 3 dogs - but turn in is NEVER easy.

Toby left me yesterday morning. I will never forget that moment, handing over a dog that I've raised for the past 10 1/2 months, who went everywhere with me, never leaving my side. And then having the thought in my head that I would possible NEVER see him again.

You are correct that was NOT easy. Of course Toby didn't mind - he just "trotted" off with the SEGDI trainer like he didn't care.

Toby isn't mine. I remember signing papers stating that this is a temporary home - he doesn't belong to me.
I am okay with that, I know that Toby has a job to do, whether it's leading a blind person, helping a disabled girl, sniffing out drugs, or maybe even being a sweet pet to a lonely family. He has many choices and I know he will pick the right one.
I will always miss Toby, I still stop at the doors waiting for him to "find the door", does he? No, because he is down at the school finishing training... taking the path that he wants, choosing a career and sticking with it.
Good luck Toby, you will always be in my heart, I love you and will NEVER forget you. Have fun with all your buddies down at the school and PLEASE listen to your teachers - college isn't just a party!

Toby's Raiser
The human without a dog that has a blog

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Goodbye and PUPPY NEWS

It's time... to say goodbye.

I will miss you guys and remember you for a long time.
Thank you for following my adventures as a guide dog in training - now it's time for me to go and take the "in training" off and become the best guide dog I can.
Though you are saying goodbye to me you will be saying "hello" to something new...

Yes, my Raiser got an email today, she is bringing home a puppy NEXT MONTH! (May 19th!).
I don't know much more but the email did include that it is a male black Goldador and it's mom's name is Ginger.

My Raiser has taken many pictures of me today, I will include 2 in this post, the rest will be published later when my Raiser has time.
I will be turned in at the guide dog school around 11:30am (along with my 2 sisters). This is when I will say goodbye to my Raiser and hello to my new furry friends.

I hope you guys will miss me as much as I will miss you :) I loved this blog and hope to convince my new owner to start a blog for me!

Toby
The dog with a blog


Picture of Toby and his 2 siblings with the FL sign. I'm with Toby in the middle, Duchess and her handler are on the left and Cassie & her Raiser are on the rightPicture of Toby's head beside my laptop, on the screen is this post - his LAST POST

Monday, April 12, 2010

Quick update and love you guys!

Hey guys!
Thought I would do a post real quick.
Cassie (my sister) showed up at my house tonight. Tomorrow morning we head off to FL. We plan on making a quick stop to pick up another doggy - Duchess (my other sister). Then with 3 dogs in the car we make our way to FL.
I hope to do a last post while in the hotel room. If something goes wrong and I'm not able to do the post then GOOD BYE! Thank you so much for following, reading and commenting on my blog!
If my Raiser doesn't get around to visit any of your blogs in the next week or so that's NOT my fault :) It may be because she is "so" busy with all the new baby goats and such.

My Raiser has taken 100s of pictures in the last couple days, they will all be posted over time when my Raiser gets back from FL.

I'm off to sleep, to then wake up & have a long car ride with 2 other doggies :)
Picture below was taken today, enjoy :)

Toby
The dog with a blog

Black/white picture of me laying beside Toby, he is in coat sleeping

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Paw Prints on her heart...

My Raiser likes to remember the dogs she raises. Besides the hundreds of pictures she takes, there is 1 other thing she uses to really remember us by.
When she had her first dog Brax she was given a "stepping stone kit" for Christmas.
She decided to use it with Brax a couple weeks before he left. She took a paw print from him and his name tag - she put those items in the stepping stone for a nice memory.
The following year before Frankie returned to school my Raiser remembered to buy a stepping stone kit. After she took Frankie's paw print she decided to start a tradition - every guide dog she raises will have a stepping stone with their paw print in it.
Well my time has "come" for me to return, I leave THIS Tuesday, so the beginning of April she bought a stepping stone kit for me - and it soon came time to use it.
Beside my paw print she also put my almost new name tag (we got it back in February) in it and even used mini rocks to spell out my name.
I'm happy my Raiser will have this to remember me by, I know she will really miss me and cry lots, so I hope this helps :)
See pictures below of the cool stepping stone!
I can't believe I will only be doing 1-2 more posts before I'm turned in, I will treasure each word I type knowing I won't be on this blog anymore :(
With the wait being 2-3 months before my Raiser receives another puppy this blog won't be updated nearly as often as I've been posting. My Raiser would love to post each day, but she won't have many things to post about.
Please note that she is NOT abandoning this blog, and she does plan on updating it frequently.
This blog will also be used for updates about ME.
So when she receives ANY information on how I'm doing, what career I may have chosen or just a random update it WILL be posted!
I hope you guys will continue to follow this blog whether or not it's updated often, because one day... their will be another puppy!
My Raiser is planning on doing the giveaway drawing next week (April 18th - Sunday), so if you haven't already entered please make sure to!
I won't be here to draw a name, so early congrats to the winner!
I plan on doing a picture post tomorrow, and hopefully 1 more Tuesday (before I leave for FL, or maybe once we reach FL).
My Raiser has many pictures of me (and will have many more) so she plans on doing some pictures posts for me.
Happy Sunday, this is my LAST EVER Sunday with my Raiser... :(
Enjoy the pictures below!
Toby
The dog with a blog
Actual picture of Toby's stone, this is when it's finished and out of the mold. It has his paw print in the middle, with his red name tag to the left, below the paw print his name is spelled out in rocks. In random places there are rocks & dog bone imprints.  It also says April 10 (2010)Picture of the concrete in the mold before anything was put in it
Picture of Toby's head beside the paw print stone, after it was taken out of the moldFull view picture of Toby, his paw is on the stone where his paw print was made, and he is looking at the camera

Picture of the things I was going to put on the stone - Toby's red name tag, some small rocks and the dog bone stamp