Monday, July 26, 2010

Ruining Reyna?

A photo of Reyna's red booties.

The other day I received word from an anonymous instructor (who’s name MIGHT be similar to mine!) at GDB that I in fact did not ruin Reyna by putting booties on her. Phew……..! Sometimes it is REALLY nice to have instructors following the blog :) She was not aware of anything that prohibited puppy raisers from exposing pups in training to booties, but I am still not exactly sure about it. The trainer went on to tell me that no one at the SR campus has had to spend any significant time introducing booties to any pup in training (even the body sensitive ones). They all wiggle a bit or pull their paws away, but they just use lots of praise and food. Good too know! Reyna didn’t do any of that. She just laid there and let me put the boots on without a problem. She is such a good girl!

Just thought I would share the news that I don’t need to change my blog name from “Raising Reyna” to “Ruining Reyna!”

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Blues and Brew Festival and a Chihuahua!

Reyna sitting with the Blues and Brew Festival sign in the background.  Of course, she is smiling for the camera!

Today we took Reyna to the Blues and Brew Festival. I thought it would be a good place to socialize her. There would be crowds of people, loud music and probably other dogs. Well, I was right! It turned out to be a great place to socialize Reyna. When we got there, we just walked around and exposed Reyna to the people and the music. Here is a video of Reyna when we first got there. My husband is walking Reyna through the event. She does well for the most part. At the end of the video you get a real taste of Reyna’s social personality when a woman comes by, calls to Reyna and bends down to visit with her without any warning. It happens so quickly there wasn’t much my husband could do. That is just life of a puppy raiser :) People are so attracted to these dogs, and because Reyna was appropriate with her interaction, (no jumping, etc,) she was allowed to say hello. Reyna always does well with saying hello to people and she does a good job remaining calm.

Link to video:

ere are a couple of pictures of Reyna throughout the day.

Reyna sitting on the lawn at the Festival with a crowd of people behind her.

Reyna laying on the grass taking a little break.

Reyna did beautifully with the people and the loud music. But she also did REALLY well with the dogs. And there were lots of them. Some well behaved and some not so much! But Reyna was not distracted, even by the dogs who were barking and growling at her. She had a wonderful opportunity to meet a tiny Chihuahua. I don’t think Reyna has ever seen a dog so tiny. I know I have never seen a dog that small. In fact. at first Reyna was trying to figure out what the heck it was. She did a good job staying in a sit while I moved her closer so she could check it out.

Reyna meeting a tiny Chihuahua for the first time.  She is in a sit just looking at this little dog who is on its owners lap.

Since Reyna did so well with that, I decided it would be ok if Reyna got a closer look at this little thing. We allowed Reyna to smell her backside so she could figure out what the heck this thing was. All went well with that, but the little Chihuahua was a little scared of Reyna. We let them sit and check each other out a little longer, then we decided they could interact again.

Reyna and the Chihuahua getting to know each other.

So here is the second interaction, Reyna and the Chihuahua are nose to nose without any problems! What an accomplishment for both dogs. It was so good for Reyna to have this opportunity, because we are never around dogs this size. We are big dog people, and all of our friends and family are big dog people, too. So this made taking Reyna to the Festival soooo worth it!

Reyna and the Chihuahua nose to nose.

Here is a close up for you. I love that!

A close up of Reyna and the Chihuahua nose to nose.

Speaking of friends, we met one of my friends and her pup “Serenity” who is a CCI pup at the Festival. Serenity is just barely five months old, so this was a lot for her, but it turned out to be a great experience. Here is a photo of Serenity and Reyna together at the end of the day. Both dogs did great. And we were actually able to taste some beer, considering it was a beer festival. Lots of fun was had by all!

Reyna sitting with her friend Serenity who is being raised in the CCI program.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Alden Lane Adventure

Reyna and Wendy sitting in front of a cut out of an old red truck that says Alden Lane Nursery.

On Thursday, Glenda and I took a trip to Livermore to the Alden Lane Nursery. Of course, Reyna and Wendy came along too! I am in the middle of remodeling my backyard, and I wanted to get some ideas for plants and landscaping. This was really the perfect place because they have such a large selection of plants. Wendy and Reyna enjoyed walking around and smelling the flowers. Both dogs were very good as Glenda and I stopped and looked at the plants and wrote down which ones I liked.

Reyna in a sit and Wendy in a down in front of the water foutain at the nursery.

There was a very pretty fountain in the middle of the nursery, so I thought it would be a nice spot for a photo op. Wendy and Reyna were happy to take a few photos, but then they both wanted to continue to explore the nursery. One thing that was really neat was there were these HUGE oak trees everywhere with really, really long branches. They were pretty amazing to look at. I found one tree that had a branch that went from the ground all the way up to the trunk of the tree. It was sort of like a balance beam, but wider. I showed it to Reyna, and to my surprise, she walk right up into the tree! I guess all of that work with the agility equipment in our club paid off. So there Reyna was, sitting in a tree, literally. She was so confident and you would have thought she had done this a hundred times. So, of course, I had to get some pictures of this. Here are some pictures of Reyna in the tree. She had a blast in the tree and she had to be told to get out of it. I wonder what other people in the nursery thought when they saw a guide dog puppy in a tree? Yep, this GDB puppy has special talents! Check out how happy Reyna was in the tree:

A photo at a distance of Reyna sitting in an oak tree.

A close up of Reyna sitting in the oak tree.  She has a big smile on her face.

These next two pictures might be GDB calendar worthy!

A very close up photo of Reyna's face while she is in the tree.  She has a huge smile on her face you can see her pink tongue.  The background of the photo is all oak tree branches.

A another close up of Reyna in the tree.  This photo is similiar to the last one but it is not taking straight on, it is more of a profile shot.  I am acutally taking this photo from beneath Reyna (since she is elevated).  She is similing with her pink tongue showing.

Wendy was not interested in climbing into the tree, so when Reyna finally got down we took a photo of both dogs in front of one of the trees. You can see in the background the long tree branches. It was very cool!

Wendy and Reyna sitting in front of an oak tree both with very expressive faces.  Oak tree branches are in the background.

After the tree adventure, we went over to check out the water features. I allowed Reyna the opportunity to explore the water fountains because I wasn’t sure if she had ever really seen one up close like that before. She had a great time exploring them, and she kept trying to bite at the water! Silly girl.

Reyna biting at the water in a water fountain.

The other thing that was neat about this place was that they had little buildings everywhere like the one below. This one was the Botanical Bistro, I thought it was so cute that I got a photo of Reyna and Wendy in it. Reyna was happy to do this because it provided her with some shade, and she really needed a break from the sun. It was pretty hot out that day!

Reyna and Wendy sitting on the porch of the Botanical Bistro.

It was a successful trip on two levels. The first was that I found everything I needed to finish my backyard. And second, it was an awesome socialization experience for Reyna (and a good place to take pictures, too!)

Reyna sitting and smiling in front of a field of colorful flowers.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Reyna’s got her red shoes on!

Yesterday Reyna and I went down to visit Glenda and Wendy, and Glenda bought these red booties for Reyna. A few weeks ago when we all went up to Murphy's for the weekend to see the Sugarland concert, Reyna ran around in the yard so hard that she ripped two of her pads :( I am not sure if it was the running or if it was the heat from the brand new blacktop that was just put in, but nevertheless, Reyna damaged her pads. They did not bleed, it was more like an abrasion. Reyna walked around for the next few days very slowly and carefully. You could tell her little paws were sore. Poor little girl. Glenda was there when all of this happened, so she thought Reyna needed some booties like Wendy has. Each student that graduates from GDB gets booties for their guide dog. They use them in the extreme weather such as snow and also when it is really hot out so the dogs don’t burn their pads. It certainly got me thinking about why it is that puppy raisers are not given these as well? It is no different for us than for the graduates with the exception that the graduates use the booties when their dogs go on escalators to prevent damage to the dogs pads.

We thought it would be good if Wendy put on her booties when I put them on Reyna for the first time. It is so funny to watch a dog who has never had booties on before. Reyna was great with letting me put them on her feet. We had no problems at all. When she started walking, she was doing this high stepping thing, and it was sooo funny to watch. But after a few minutes, she adjusted just fine. I have a video clip from when Glenda and I were getting use to the booties. This was about 5 minutes after she had them on. Check it out.

After a few minutes, we took Reyna and Wendy into the backyard to explore a little with their booties on. Here is a video clip of that.

Since Reyna doesn’t mind wearing her boots, I will make sure when it is really hot outside or when she is running hard that she has her little boots on to protect her paws. I think she looks pretty darn cute in them, too!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A post from Judi "All Girls Weekend!"

Reyna and I went on an "all girls weekend" to visit with my friend Annette in Fresno. Annette lives in a "co-housing" community. Everyone helps everyone else out; there is a community kitchen and everyone can participate in making dinners or you can choose to eat in your own home. There is a community garden which Reyna and I explored, plus we got to meet lots of interesting people. Reyna and I were invited with Annette for dinner at someone's house on Friday night. Reyna was perfect even though there were three cats in the house. Lots of the community dogs took an interest in her but she was on her best guide dog behavior. It was really hot so we devised a relieving plan that included going out at 5 in the morning (Reyna's idea) and during the day only walking in the shade or on bark along the side of the walkways. Saturday was an all day trip to Huntington Lake east of was warm at the lake so I set Reyna up with her on little umbrella shade area she could lay under it and still have a full view of the lake and all the people going in and out.

Reyna at the lake laying on a blanket under neath an embrella for shade.

We did several walks into the lake to cool off and Reyna loved the water she really didn't want to swim she wanted to play and look for rocks.

Reyna and Judi at the lake.  Judi is in the water and Reyna is sitting at the waters edge.

Reyna in the lake biting at the water!

Several dogs went by us including a black lab that was loose with out his people and she completely ignored him! (Good Girl). Back to Fresno and the heat 105 yuck and dinner. My friend has a cat Reyna was interested in her but we came up with a plan that Reyna had the run of the house during the day and Jade could be out at night. Saturday night there was a big celebration dinner in the community room for one of the residents I decided to leave Reyna at the house because the area was so crowded and being held outside, plus very hot. She was great in the house no worries and was happy to see us when we got back but she had all her toys with her so wasn't that concerned. Anyway back to Walnut Creek and Mia's birthday party on Sunday...Reyna was really happy to see all the grandkids and was happy to be back in her own spot. All in all a great weekend for everyone.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Reyna’s Recall?

Reyna sitting on green grass at 12 weeks old in her puppy coat for the first time!

Where does the time go? Could it really be time for Reyna’s recall? It seems like it was just yesterday when Reyna was 12 weeks old getting her picture in her puppy coat for the first time. She was a little cutey wasn’t she? I thought I would update everyone on this subject because I had several people asking about it. My CFR thought that Reyna was going to be on the June recall, because she turned 15 months old in June. But they only wanted three dogs in for training in June from our area, so Reyna was not on for June. I was told there was a chance that she would be recalled this weekend, but I found out a few days ago, there are still several dogs ahead of her, so she was not on for the July recall. So now we wait until the August 15th recall. I believe she will be recalled in August, but that is really just a feeling I have.

In the past, puppy raisers in my area were given about two months notice for recall. Now that GDB has changed everything, they are only recalling the exact number of dogs they need, instead of a set number of dogs each month. But what that means is they wait until the last minute to see how many dogs are cut from breeding and put into training. So we are now getting sometimes less than a weeks notice for recall. I am glad GDB has this all dialed in much more efficiently, but I don’t like the fact that we have no clue if our pup is being recalled until last minute. So as of right now I am planning on August for her recall, but we will have to just wait to for the offical word!

A day at the salon with Reyna

Reyna sitting on the front passenger side floor board as we were driving to the salon in Napa.

Last Friday, I took a trip to Napa to get my hair cut and colored. I decided to take Reyna along, and this first photo is of Reyna in the car as we were driving to Napa. Don’t worry, I took this picture when we were at a stop light.

Reyna at the salon laying in a down on at the side of my chair locking eye contact with me.

I have been getting my hair done by the same person for over ten years, so she has had the opportunity to meet all of the pups I have raised. When we arrived, Reyna felt the need to go over and say “Hi” like she always does. I asked Megan to ignore Reyna this time because she was trying to hard to interact with Megan. Of course that was really hard for Megan to do, but she did it :) I found a little spot in front the chair where I was sitting and I put Reyna in a down stay. She laid down and stared at me for a while. She does this thing where she just locks eye contact with me. You can see this in the photo above. But she was a really good girl and she laid there quietly while Megan put color into my hair.

Reyna laying on the floor of the Salon with her head down as pieces of cut hair surround her.

Then it came time for the cutting part, and I thought for sure Reyna would be interested in all of the flying hair. But nope, she just laid there with her head down on the ground just looking at all of the pieces of cut hair, but not going after them in any way. I was really impressed, and so was everyone else in the salon. When it was finally time to leave, Reyna bounced up and was ready to roll. She is such a good girl and I am happy she did so well. I think that might be the last time she goes with me to the salon, because she is getting to recall age. I hope she knows what a joy she is to have around and how much I am going to miss her.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Awesome weekend and the Sugarland concert!

Reyna and Wendy smiling for the camera before the Sugarland concert at Ironstone Winery.

The Ironstone Amphitheatre.

This weekend we went up to Ironstone Winery to see the Sugarland concert and it was incredible! We went up to Murphy’s for the weekend with Glenda and “Wendy” and Glenda’s husband John. Reyna has been to concerts before, so I knew she would do great. The fun thing was that Reyna had her BFF Wendy at the concert with her and they were truly wonderful. Everyone kept asking if they could take their photo while we were waiting for the concert to start. The photo above is one of the many times we posed the girls for a photo op. They were both so happy to be together they had huge smiles on their faces.

We had great seats, but they were so close together and their was no room for the dogs. We couldn’t even put them under our chairs because the chairs had a bar at the bottom which prevent the dogs from fitting underneath them. So luckily we were on an isle and we just moved the dogs when people needed to walk by.

Wendy laying in the isle at the concert.  She is looking up and smiling at me.

You can see how tight the isle was by this picture of Wendy. She was so good about just laying there by Glenda.

Reyna trying to get Glenda's attention so she will pet her.

Reyna on the other hand, could not get enough of Glenda. She kept creeping over to get closer and closer to her. Then Reyna would sit up and nudge Glenda to get her attention so she would pet her. Reyna basically didn’t leave Glenda’s side the entire evening.

Reyna laying at Glenda's feet.

Reyna did lay down, but as you can tell, she is at Glenda feet. (Glenda is wearing the white dress). But of course, Glenda didn’t mind, in fact, she loved it!

Glenda giving Reyna and Wendy a drink of water before the concert.  It was HOT and they were both so thirsty.

It was REALLY hot and it was an outside concert, so the dogs got a little drink before the concert started. They drank almost a whole bottle of water. These girls were thirsty!

Sugarland on stage at the concert.  Go see them!!

Sugarland started playing and they were awesome! The amount of energy coming off of that stage was like something I have never experienced. The music was so loud, that you could not only hear it, but you could feel it going through your body. When the music started Glenda and I looked at each other, and you could tell we were both thinking the same thing. Was this going to be too loud for the dogs? Well, I looked down and this is what I saw. So I guess the answer to our questions was, heck no! As I looked down, I saw that Reyna was using Wendy as a pillow. They were both just sound asleep.

Reyna using Wendy as a pillow at the concert.

Sugarland performing on stage.

Then they switched to this position. It looks like the two of them are hugging. Soooooo darn cute!

Reyna and Wendy hugging each othe while they sleep at the LOUD concert.  We could not ask for better dogs!

Sugarland on stage.  They were awesome.

The concert was so much fun that I don’t think we sat down during the entire concert. I was dancing around to the music, but I had to keep both of my feet in the same place because I had Reyna’s head on my right foot and Wendy’s head on my left foot. By the end of the night, both of my feet were asleep :)

We didn’t get home from the concert until after midnight. The pups were so sleepy. On Saturday, we spend the day laying around the pool, and Reyna and Wendy both went swimming and they had a ton of fun playing with their beach toys in the pool.

Last night, we cooked a fabulous gourmet meal, and we sat out side enjoying dinner with the best bottle of Cab I have had in a long time! We sat outside enjoying the view and a beautiful sunset. Now that’s the life :)

Reyna and Wendy snuggled up on Wendy's bed together.

Reyna and Wendy alseep together on Wendy's bed.  Two tired pups!

These photos were taken last night after all of the fun was over. Check out the two BFF’s snuggling up and sleeping together!