Lone Star Chapter

South Central Region

Father-Daughter Team Raises a Puppy

Samantha wanted a puppy, but she was leaving for college soon and her father was hesitant about the long-term commitment of adopting a dog. Samantha did her research and found Canine Companions for Independence and the opportunity to provide a loving home for a future assistance dog by becoming a puppy raiser.

Samantha and her father Shawn were paired with puppy Kendall III. Kendall stole their hearts and became a part of the family. Shawn and Kendall attend Samantha's band concerts and the high school football games. The family takes care of Kendall together to make sure she is socialized and confident in all environments and is prepared to become an assistance dog. "It's a family affair, we all pitch in," Shawn said. Even Samantha's grandmother, Melinda, loves to help take care of Kendall and watch her cuddle up in her bed.

Raising Kendall has impacted Shawn and his family. His son, Christopher, loves Kendall, who calms him when he is doing his online schoolwork. For Shawn, the experience has been worthwhile despite the hurdles that can come with raising a puppy.

"What you get back is far greater than what you put in," he said. "Knowing that the goal is to help someone who needs it reassures us that what we are doing has meaning."

Puppy raising is vital to the mission of Canine Companions for Independence. Without dedicated supporters like Shawn and his family, we could not provide assistance dogs to children and adults with disabilities. For more information about puppy raising visit www.cci.org/puppyraiser.

About Canine Companions for Independence

Canine Companions for Independence provides highly-trained assistance dogs to children and adults with disabilities. Established in 1975, Canine Companions has five regional training centers across the country. Canine Companions is recognized worldwide for the excellence of its dogs, and the quality and longevity of the matches it makes between dogs and people. For more information, visit www.cci.org or call 1-800-572-BARK.