Empty Nesters Find Purpose With Puppies

“Raising puppies for Canine Companions has given our lives a sense of purpose, now that both of our sons are grown,” explains Teri and Nick.

They are often fondly reminded of raising their sons through the puppy raising process. “The first time the puppy didn’t have an accident all night, we were so proud! It was like when our sons were potty-training,” says Teri and Nick. “Or when we had to say goodbye to our first puppy, it was similar to when we left our sons at college for the first time. We were overwhelmed with emotion, both joy and sadness as they reached this milestone in their lives.”

Teri and her husband Nick are currently raising their second puppy, Fers. “Our first puppy graduated as a hearing dog,” says Nick proudly. “When we agreed to raise our first puppy, we did it out of the goodness of our hearts, hoping we would help someone in need. What we didn’t expect was how much each puppy would enhance our lives!”

“It’s a win-win. We honestly believe we receive as much from each puppy as the assistance dog provides to his eventual partner,” explains Teri. “Being a volunteer puppy raiser has given us an identity much bigger than our individual selves and has brought us closer as a couple.”

Photo credit: Newspaper Media Group/Eric Sucar, chief photographer