About Me

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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

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

Monday, January 30, 2012

Adult Day Care

I had my first visit at an Adult Day Care this past Friday; my raiser was really looking forward to this visit, because she wanted to see how I would handle myself around a bunch of people that just wanted to pet and love on me.
I was a wee bit excited at first, but when my raiser told me to do a "down-stay" beside some of the people (to show she had control over me), I soon realized I had to behave, in order to get loved on.
Fur being an (almost) 5 month old Lab, my raiser was very impressed at how calm I stayed (after I first got started), she even had some issues getting me to GET UP and move on to the next person who wanted to pet me :)
It was a great experience fur me, and we will be scheduling another visit with them, furry soon! 
Before leaving, we also "ran into" a Goldendoodle therapy dog, who was furry friendly (we we're allowed to meet) and was doing great fur his first trip out!
My raiser's sister kindly came along too, and took lots of pictures, so I have included a few below :)

-Brandon 


Everybody just LOVED me, I guess I'm furry cute!
Picture of Brandon in a down-stay at the Adult Day Care, he is resting his head on someones leg - and also being petted by the lady who is in the wheelchair right beside him

 I even got to sit in the lap of a man who was blind; he would keep repeating over & over "he knows, he knows" (as in: me (the doggy) knows that he is blind) - I gave him lots of kisses & made him feel good! (this was with his permission, of course!)
Picture of Brandon sitting in a man's lap (with my permission!) and giving him kisses on his face (this person also happens to be blind)
   
My raiser even gave me a command sometimes, to "ignore" the person petting me... I did a furry good job at that!
Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay while someone (who is kneeling on the ground beside him) pets him

Sometimes I had to "work" in order to get the people to pet me, but in the end... they ALWAYS fell fur me :)
Picture of Brandon getting loved on by people in chairs
Being a therapy dog is HARD WORK! 
Picture of Brandon SLEEPING beside someones feet, while she pets him (no idea how "getting petted" can tire him out; but this happened quite a few times!)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Meet Tucker

I had my first ever "work date" this past Saturday with a local guide dog in training, and it was the most fun work I've ever done!
But let me rewind a little, so you guys can get caught up on how us doggies first met...
WAY back in December 2011 (okay, last month...) a story ran in 2 newspapers about my raiser & I (to help raise support fur my in-home care...), a local guide dog raiser who is currently raising her first guide dog puppy for "Leader Dogs for the Blind" (different guide dog school) happened to read the article and decided to contact my raiser (this past week) to see if we could meet. Since my raiser LOVES to give me lots of exposures, they soon set a date for us doggies to meet (so both of us dogs could work on "doggy distractions" WHILE working in a public environment).

Okay, so now you know how we found each other :) Back to me explaining how much fun I had...
The work date went really well; we meet at the mall to work; since it would be a great public place, and was big enough that us doggies would have the ability to ignore each other.
"Tucker" is a male yellow lab, who is 8 months old - since his raiser is something that their school likes to call "a independent puppy raiser" (doesn't have a puppy group/meeting to attend each month) he really lacks the training of working with other dogs in public.
So it was a win-win situation, I got to help Tucker learn to work around another doggy in public, while he got to be a furry great distraction fur me... so I would learn to ignore him! (Tucker handles doggy distraction by whining/barking - so that was a GREAT exposure fur me to learn to ignore!).
After we worked in the mall for a few hours, our raisers decided they were hungry, so we headed over to Chick-fil-a so THEY could grab a bit to eat.
They were soo proud of us doggies for maintaining a down-under (laying under the chairs) and ignoring each other, for the entire lunch! (which took another few hours!).
Once they FINALLY finished eating, we headed outside to go our separate ways, but before they left... they took our jackets off and let us meet each other! (and my raiser was very surprised to see how calm we were while meeting each other!).

So all in all it was a great day, and we hope to be able to meet again soon (and if it's not raining... I'll bring Tucker back to my place, so he can see lots of furry cool farm animals!).
My raiser did happen to get a few pictures on her camera (okay, the first one is all thanks to the Chick-fil-a lady, though!), so you can "somewhat" see what Tucker looks like!

-Brandon


Us doggies maintaining a furry wonderful down-under! (oh yeah, and our raisers...)
Picture of Brandon & I with Tucker & his raiser at Chick-fil-a (both dogs are in a down-under)

Me doing what I'm best at... SLEEPING! (I mean... working)
Picture of Brandon sleeping at Chick-fil-a

 Me doing a furry wonderful job at totally ignoring Tucker (who is off in the background behind me)
Picture of Brandon in a down-stay inside the mall, you can see Tucker in the background (also doing a down-stay)

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Where was I?

ROLLER SKATING!
Okay, no I wasn't... but my raiser and her human friends were :)
(answering the question from my previous post)

Picture of Brandon & I at the roller skating rink; Brandon is in a down-stay on the colorful carpet, and I'm standing beside him on skates

I still don't get why my raiser wouldn't let me skate WITH her, but I did enjoy having kids skate over to pet me!
video

(Movie of Brandon at the skating rink, lots of kids are skating by him (on the carpet), and a few pet Brandon as they "skate" by)

  
My raiser was happy to have me with her, since she's yet to expose me to a skating rink, I wasn't to fond of the idea of my raiser skating away - and me having to be in a down-stay, but she did come back fur lots of visits! (and photos).
Over all, I had an AWESOME time and it was a furry great exposure for a guide dog in training! It's kinda hard maintaining a sit-stay (or just staying calm) when lots of kids are skating by :)

Make sure to keep your eye (or nose) out fur my next post... it will be so furry cool, being all about another guide dog in training I met today (instead of a "play date" us guide dog pups call it a "work date"!), my & the other doggy's raiser met at the mall, and let us 2 doggies work together.

Have a furry great weekend!!

-Brandon
Picture of Brandon in a stand-stay while kids skate by him to go on the rink

Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay beside the skating rink, you can see some skaters in the back ground


I still don't get you guys thought I was at the V-E-T office??? I mean, that is sooo obviously the skating carpet...
Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay on the cool colorful carpet


One more movie fur good measure :)
video
(Movie of Brandon watching people skate on the rink)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Guess where I went??

-Brandon

Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay inside "somewhere", you can see the very colorful carpet Brandon is sitting on (looks like confetti!)

Saturday, January 14, 2012

My Mango Minster Entry...

Mango Minster is here, and I've been on my paws begging my raiser to let me enter...
the deciding factor is FINALLY in, and she said YES!
So here is my official entry for Mango Minster 2012, in the "Working Stiffs" category.
  
I (Brandon) will take you through a brief "blast through the recent past" to show you how well I fit into the category "Working Stiffs".
Starting off with the well known obvious:
#1. Being a guide dog in training pretty much says it all... I work hard EVERYDAY, whether I'm learning what I'm suppose to do for the command "forward", being calm at a retirement home or how I'm suppose to behave during puppy meetings... I'm always working and learning things new :)
Picture of Brandon in coat in a sit-stay at the mall, waiting for his next command

#2. I have to work hard to ignore myself in all the cool mirrors my raiser takes me by, while shopping. I don't get why she enjoys pointing out every mirror to me, when I'm suppose to "ignore" things??  I guess everything makes for a good photo op:


#3. No matter how big or fun an animal may be, I have to work hard on maintaining a calm temperament, and making sure to always listen to my raiser FIRST, before playing with the animal.


Picture of Brandon "somewhat" looking back at me, trying to figure out if he's allowed to go sniff Patches (the horse hitched up the the buggy; in the background)

#4. I do an amazing job working with my raiser on my commands, whether it's learning new ones - or just practicing "old" ones, I do them all!

Picture of Brandon in a down-stay during puppy class (about 6-8 puppies to the left/right of him too, that you can't see... just adds in for "distraction training"!)


#5. No matter how good the food may smell up top... I have to work on ignoring ALL of it. My raiser does a good job at taking me anywhere and everywhere with her, including food courts, fast food stops, fancy restaurants, pizza pick up, and any other random food places, that she thinks can be used as "distraction training" fur me!


Picture of Brandon maintaining a perfect sit-stay underneath our booth at a fast food restaurant

#6. I have to be ready to make big decisions at any random time, since humans are prone to getting a "brain freeze" and totally forget what they were wanting to do next, which means I have to not only do my work but also make choices fur her!
Picture of Brandon trying to decide whether to go "up" or "down" the stairs at the movie theater

#7. I should be the most advanced 4 month old doggy, since I've already been attending college with my raiser... you all know what kind of hard work that can be!

Picture of Brandon laying down on his blanket during one of my college classes (the one time he wasn't asleep!)

#8.  I worked furry hard on learning to enjoy the V-E-T. After many different trips their and lots of treats... I've decided that the V-E-T is almost as fun as puppy class!!

Picture of Brandon sitting on the exam table, while the vet does a brief examination of him

#9. And we all know how furry hard I have to work to look so darn cute!!

Picture of Brandon as a "wee little thing" in the grass, same picture as his blogger header photo

So, as you can see... I may still be a furry young puppy, but I have a lot of duties at this age, and do an amazing job following through with them, if I say so myself!
Do you think I qualify for the "Workings Stiffs" category??
I look forward to learning more in the following months about my journey to becoming a guide dog for the blind, and can't wait to see where I end up!
A huge furry thanks to Mango & his Momma for planning & running the Mango Minster 2012, we are looking forward to participating in the event/dog show... and know it will be a lot of furry fun!!

-Brandon

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - Back to School

Christmas break is now over, which means my raiser is back to "school" (college classes) and of course, I am too...
Sweet dreams!

- Brandon
Picture of Brandon cuddled up sleeping on his blanket during one of my college classes

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Wagon Ride!

My raiser took my on my very first wagon ride recently, complete with an "up close sniffing" with her horse - that's right, I got to MEET the horse!!
"Patches" was very friendly and I really enjoyed meeting her; I'm thinking I may ask fur my very own horse when my birthday roles around!
The wagon ride was soo fun, and my raiser did an amazing job at both driving AND controlling me... with no help from others!
It was a great experience, and now I can brag about it to the other guide dog puppies :)

I want to apologize for not visiting any of you guys recently, I've been super busy lately and I hope that my raiser & I's schedule settles down some, but knowing her busy life... that will never happen!
So even if I'm not commenting on or visiting your blog, I do love you guys and hope to be reading about some of your adventures soon!

Enjoy the pictures below,

-Brandon


Mommy, can I sniff it???
Picture of Brandon staring at the horse (Patches) & wagon, my sister is holding the horse and a farm visitor is also beside her

Let me touch it...

Picture of Brandon trying to decide whether to sniff Patches or not

She smells like a horse...
video
Movie of Brandon sniffing Patches
*Please note that Patches has been introduced to "new" dogs many a times, and doesn't mind them at all (she's a petting zoo horse) - so this is/was old news to her and we were not worried  or unsure (at anytime) that Brandon may "spook" or "scare" her.


OMD, she's the size of King Kong!

Picture of Brandon staring up at Patches

FINALLY, my wagon ride :)
Picture of Brandon & I sitting on the wagon (aka: the buckboard)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Years!

Hello 2012!
I have been so furry busy, that I've yet to do a post about the New Year, I can't believe that!
Wanna know what I've been "so busy" with??
I got to spend the last week with my raiser's AWESOME friends who are in a different state, and we all enjoyed celebrating the New Year together!
I had such a good time with them, and though my raiser made me spend some of the time in the crate, I did enjoy my week. The family has an older male yellow lab, who would "sometimes" play with me, but I think that at times, he got annoyed with my "cute puppy look"...
My raiser's friends were soo fun to hang out with, and spent (almost) every second with me!
We all went out together to watch the movie War Horse while we were visiting with the friends, my raiser said it was a great movie, but I wouldn't know... since I slept through the entire movie! (which my raiser was quite proud about!).

On to the New Year stuff though...
I had a WONDERFUL 2011, the main highlight was the fact that...
* I was BORN in 2011
A few other things about 2011
* I had my first Christmas
* My raiser took me on lots of outings
* Meeting new people

A few goals for this year:
* Keep up with blogging regularly
* Reach over 350 followers (current: 322)
* Have more comments per post
* Keep an open mind when my raiser tries to teach me new things

Furry thanks to my raiser's wonderful friends, for letting us spend the New Year with you guys, we had a blast - and it wouldn't have been near as fun without you!
Our guide dog group's "New Years Party" will be this Saturday, I'm looking forward to more partying...

-Brandon


Last 2011 picture...
Last picture of Brandon for 2011! (picture of Brandon in a sit-stay with glowing eyes)!

Picture moment before heading in to watch War Horse...
Picture of Brandon with my friends, sister & I (blue sweater) beside the full size Alvin & the chipmunks at the movie theater (before heading in to watch War Horse)

I just wish my raiser would tell me WHERE we are suppose to be sitting in the movie theater...

Picture of Brandon trying to decide which way to go in the movie theater (climbing up the stairs)

I got to spend lots of time like this...
Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay inside the dog crate at my friend's house

And the other dog (Woody) NEVER got locked up...
Picture of Brandon in the dog crate beside Woody (friend's dog) who is right outside of Brandon's crate

 But my raiser's friends did make sure to spend LOTS of furry fun time with me!
Picture of one of my friends holding Brandon
And (at times) I was able to spend time with the other dog Woody...
Picture of Brandon & Woody beside each other in a down-stay

My raiser said I wasn't able to have any french fries from McDonald's!
Picture of Brandon in a sit-stay beside 2 of my friends, who are sitting down at McDonald's