Puppy Story - Journey

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Good Sit Was Just the Beginning 

Then Journey was learning to walk on lead and sit. Now, he's entered into CCI professional training. Esther misses him, but knows he's in the best possible hands with CCI professional instructors. Here's what CCI apprentice Linda has to say about the experience of the puppies joining professional training.

"I'm always excited to get to know the new dogs. It's a fun challenge to understand the specific of each dog, like what gets them motivated," shares Linda.

"I understand the selflessness of volunteer puppy raisers. I want to do my best job possible, give the dogs every opportunity and really make the puppy raisers proud," Linda says.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Esther's Journey

Journey is the fourth puppy that Esther, national breeding and puppy program manager has raised for Canine Companions for Independence.

Here's what she has to say:

"This puppy raising experience has been one of the most exciting experiences yet. Journey has helped me become more creative with my training strategies. It's amazing to look back and think about the journey we've had together."

Here's some fun Journey facts:


  • Journey love to work for food as a small pup
  • He always learned commands quickly.
  • His favorite toy was a seemingly giant purple dinosaur.


  • Journey can out run any other dog in the CCI Park.
  • Loves to work, with or without food.
  • Proudly prances for 'let's go'
  • That purple dinosaur isn't so giant anymore.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Big Day is Coming Up!
Preparing for the day Journey will matriculate from the puppy program and join professional training requires mental focus and preparation for Journey and Esther both. Here's some recommendations from Esther:

Keep training, but don't overtrain. It's not quite the same as your college finals week! Keep training as 'real life' as possible. Continue submitting monthly progress reports - Canine Companions trainers love these!

For the puppy raiser looking forward to this day can be one of the hardest things to do. Esther recommends continuing with your group puppy classes which offer some support from other raisers and a chance to trade puppies. also, remember to breathe, relax, and know that the puppy you are raising will cross the stage with you at turn-in and that you have helped make a difference in someone's life.



Wednesday, May 19, 2010
A Year of Milestones
Journey's first year marks a year of milestones.

Journey's list of accomplishments include crate training, socializing, basic commands, hurry on command, while impulse control is one always to be worked on, Journey is making great strides in this department. He is now able to accompany Esther on longer public outings, including his favorite pit stop at the local pet store for a frosty paw treat. 

Here's how Journey's the same now as he was a year ago:
  • Has a happy prance-like walk
  • Loves people
  • Loves food

Here's how Journey's different:

  • Sleeps all night
  • Hurries outside, on command
  • Learning impulse control
  • "Speaks" on command
  • Moved up to the big puppy class

Of course, Esther couldn't have spent the last year as Journey's puppy raiser without experiencing a few changes herself:

  • Sleeps all night
  • Takes Journey along for longer outings
  • Puppy trading with other puppy raisers

And then there's things that will never change:

  • Appreciates and respects volunteer puppy raisers
  • Loves the crate
  • Always prepared for the unexpected


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Journey's Whole Body Wag
"Journey likes to greet people visiting my office with a very exciting wiggle," shares Esther.
"This behavior isn't becoming of a future assistance dog," she continues.
Here's some suggestions to nip excitable greetings in the bud:
  • Practice controlled interactions on leash
  • Reinforce the sit command and praise your puppy for sitting when people approach
  • Use the shake command to have your puppy be a part of the interaction
  • If your puppy is excitable at home or in the office, use the crate to prevent unsupervised interactions.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Journey's First Sleepover 
Tips from Esther:
Pack a favorite toy.
Don't forget the crate.
Make notes of feeding instructions and typical routines.
Tips from Journey:
Be good.
Have fun.

Do you Twitter? Login or sign up to follow Journey and get updates on our Twitter page @ccijourney!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Valentine's Top Five
What Esther Likes Most about Journey:
5. He eats everything on his plate.
4. He speaks (and quiets) on command.
3. His agility, he's an athlete and can run super fast.
2. His smarts, learns quickly.
1. His beautiful brown eyes, he has attentive eyes that stare straight to my soul.
What Journey Likes Most About Esther:
5. She takes me on long walks.
4. She lets me lay on her feet.
3. She's made me her sidekick at work.
2. When she has treats in her hands.
1. When she says 'Good Boy.'

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Esther and Journey's  New Years Resolutions

Journey's Resolutions

Learn to be kind to cats

Go to mom the first time she says "here"

Leap 10 feet to catch frisbee in midair like movie star dog

Chew on toys, not on shoes

Esther's Resolutions

Run half marathon

Attend all puppy classes

Remember that I'm raising a puppy and changing lives
Remember to tweet for Journey @ccijourney  

 Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Journey's Holiday Wish

Journey, having behaved like a good CCI puppy, hasn't had any holiday turkey. He only has a few wishes for the holidays to acknowledge his tremendous restraint!
  • Stay home for the holidays
  • Have puppy raisers build big warm fire to nap in front of
  • Help puppy raisers root for our favorite football teams
  • A new bone, please....pretty please!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Don't Stop Believin'
You knew we'd have to go there eventually, with CCI puppy Journey we just couldn't help ourselves. That's Journey and Esther in their appropriately themed 1980s Halloween costumes.
Esther and Journey happily survived their first Halloween together, and the experience generated some helpful hints from Esther:
1. Never force a puppy to wear anything they seem uncomfortable with. That's just not fun for anybody.
2. The crate is your friend with new guests in your home. It's safe and welcoming for the puppy and with a peanut butter stuffed Kong, it's an absolute treat!
3. Remember to keep candles, decorations and your pumpkins up high or out of reach.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Journey Ventures Into Socialization
In addition to outings to stores, Journey also participated in a fire drill recently. He did great! He met firemen in uniform, observed the fire truck and responded to his commands and stayed comfortable the whole time.
But Esther and Journey's favorite socializing time is one on one, an evening walk in the neighborhood followed by a cradling session before bedtime.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Journey Trades His Puppy Vest for a Life Jacket Vest for Family Fun 
Journey traveled on a camping and boating trip. Volunteer puppy raiser Esther made sure the trip was safe and fun by doing a few simple things:
  • Always bring a crate with you, Esther enjoys the portable collapsible crate for easy transport
  •  Bring plenty of chew toys to keep the puppy occupied
  • A long leash or tie out to keep the puppy near you, so you can be hands free 
  • Give the puppy breaks and on hot days, keep him in shady areas
  • Be prepared for illness, Esther's first aid kit includes benadryl in the event of a bee sting

Wednesday, August, 19, 2009
Crate Training: Check.
Journey is fully crate trained, but his behavior still leaves something to be desired. He is just a puppy after all. But, Esther has a plan...

*Puppy socialization

*Teaching Journey to walk on leash and ignore the other dogs

*Continue working on new skills

*Get to know each other better and better


Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Introducing Journey
Canine Companions puppy Journey is one of seven puppies from Meeko's "J" litter. All the puppies are playing and working hard with their new volunteer puppy raisers.
With the hardest part of the first week behind them, Canine Companions puppy Journey and volunteer puppy raiser Esther are learning lots and lots.
Journey's learned how to consistently sleep through the night. Woo-Hoo!
Esther's learned--We should all take lessons from puppies...work tirelessly for what you want, play hard, take naps and don't stress out about a thing!
Do you Twitter? Login or sign up to follow Journey and get updates on our Twitter page @ccijourney!


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