Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Ansel's Monthly Report!

We were on pins and needles today, waiting to hear from Ansel's trainer! She says that Ansel continues to progress with the commands, that he is doing well and she enjoys working with him. She said that he seems to have a nice responsiveness to correction and motivation. She has some concerns about about, ah, the evacuation product and is watching that. He was noted to have the same behaviors as last month...anxiety, whining, forging, rough play with other dogs, licking (what a surprise!--NOT!)and a few others. Our next progress report, assuming Ansel continues to do well, will be an actual telephone call on January 25. Graduation is slated for February 17th--NOTE! NOT February 10th. CCI has had conflicting dates regarding this graduation ceremony!

For fun: one of my favorite pictures with Ansel!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

What I am Working Toward...Meet Crisp!

OK, so I am a truant today! But the black market here (don't ask...pig ears, ice cubes, and fuzzy beds are popular items) just delivered this news, and I had to share. It is so motivating, so inspiring, and it makes being here at boot camp so worth it...if I can just be like Crisp!

Crisp was graduating just as I turned in last August, so I got to see him work with his person. And SWMBO and TBG got to talk with him and his peeps too!|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

Look at Me!

Geezopetes everyone! I mean, I love it here and everything, but it is a bit like boot camp. No time to breathe, much less sneak away to talk with my adoring fans! Speaking of adorable, the puparazzi snuck in a few weeks ago and managed to catch a few shots of me. Here they are!

Gotta run!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Ansel is...a Dog!

Several of our friends traveled to Delaware, Ohio this past week. It was Putnam's time to turn in. He will be missed!

While they were there, they had an opportunity to play with Chloe and Ansel, both of whom are now second-semester PITs (along with Dembre!).

Our friends reported that Ansel looked great, wriggled and wriggled when he saw them, seemed adjusted and very happy. My favorite description was when one of our friends said he was "light-of-foot." I've held on to that as a great comfort.

Anyway, Mark and I were stunned when we saw pictures of our See what YOU think!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

WOW, the good news keeps on rolling in!

We received Ansel's November report today. He continues to do fine with his advanced training. He's learning how to turn light switches on and off along with all the other commands he's learned since arriving at Canine College.

He's recovered from his surgery and seems to be loving his new life and surroundings. We heard through the grapevine that both Ansel and Chloe looked great and that new pictures are to arrive soon. Deb and I can't wait!!

Congrats to the dynamic duo of Ansel & Chloe. Keep up the good work you two, we continue to be very proud of you both!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Wall of Fame

We finally got around to adding to our wall of fame.

Marty - the most valued substitute puppy raiser and creator of the Magical Peanut Butter Treats, made us a great needle point of Ansel just before turn in (with the blue ribbon hanging on it).


Lisa - a KSDS volunteer puppy raiser and amateur photographer extraordinaire gave us the mounted picture that she took at the lake last summer.

Thanks so much to you both! They are great additions to the Wall of Fame.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Eat your heart out Ansel!

Months ago a new donut shop was about to open in Manhattan. It was advertising Maple Bacon Donuts and we snapped this picture of Ansel drooling on the window.

It finally opened and Deb brought home a sample. OMG, it is THE most delicious donut ever to grace this planet!!

Sorry Ansel, wish you were here to partake, but don't feel bad...Carver liked it.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

October report is in.

Ansel's still hanging in there, learning new commands and being the happy dog that he is! He was neutered and has recuperated from the surgery. He got to work with the trainer in a wheel chair this month (not that he hadn't done that before). The only negative things to pop up are that he seems to be protecting food and toys which is new and he's been playing rough with other dogs (probably my fault there).

The trainer wrote:

"Ansel had a little bit of rest from training due to recovery from his neuter. While he has had some vomiting and (removed for the faint-of-heart) he has had the same upbeat personality as usual. His training is progressing without difficulty. He continues to bark and whine out of excitement and sometimes gets a little rough out in the exercise yard. We will continue to progress with his advanced training commands over the next month, focusing on the retrieve and tug."

Keep up the good work little man, we are very proud of you.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Time's Up, Youngster!

And stop calling me Yoda!

Geez, young'uns, I tell ya! Carver and I managed to sneak out of the kennel. It wasn't easy, but we were extra motivated. The office was totally rockin' yesterday, and one of the staff left their computer on at the end of the day! Well, I was drawn to it like a moth to flame, as you can well imagine. But, being the generous soul that I am, I showed Carver how to use the computer first and let him do a practice post. It wasn't terrible for a first try. I couldn't bring myself to tell him that I am quite afraid writing skills are not as appreciated by the CCI trainers as they should be.

Who's Carver? Well, Carver and I have become acquainted over the last few days. He's awfully young and naive, and I have felt it necessary to take him under my paw a bit. You see, he's just 8 weeks old, a Lab Cross, and pretty needy. He keeps asking me all of these questions about my life, and what I've done, and how I got here. It's quite annoying, actually, but I feel like I have to be polite and indulge him. Anyway, he just loved all of my stories, and I am a bit embarassed to say that I think he has a bit of a hero complex about me. He started just begging me to help him get over to the Sellers' household so that he could follow in my pawsteps.

My pawsteps! Humph! I had to set that whippersnapper straight and tell him about the real pawsteps that ALL CCI pups aspire to fill--those of Jeb, the Graduate Dog Extraordinaire! So, of course, he was FULL of questions about him. I did my best to share Jeb's legend with the youngster. I think that was a mistake, because then he was even more insistent that he just had to get to Kansas! At first there was NO WAY I was going to let this insistent, impertinent, know-nothing-of-a-puppy carry on with TBG and SWMBO. But, Dembre heard us talking and chimed in that he heard TBG was missing me quite a bit, and that softened my heart...

Well, I can't give away all of our secrets here, but suffice it to say that I have arranged to have Carver II shipped to the Sellers' household on Monday. I just hope that TBG is up for THIS challenge!

And, if you REALLY want to find out more about the young grasshopper, go to

CARVER, NO! Get off the scanner! (Have fun, TBG!)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

September Report Is In

Good news and bad news today.

Good news is that Ansel is still in training. He seems to be doing well, is willing to learn and is trainable. His trainer will start working on his commands using a wheel chair next month. He exhibits some of the same behaviors that he did with us, like pulling on the leash and whining, but apparently not so much as to warrant release.

Bad news is that he was not chosen to be a breeder and will be neutered. He obviously was not paying attention when I explained how his life COULD be! Oh well, not like that comes as a surprise.

Overall, we're happy that he's doing OK and still in the program....for now.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Looking Forward to Wednesday

Well, the Human-Animal Bond Conference is over and now it is time to look forward to Wednesday...when we will receive Ansel's next progress report (assuming he is not released between now and then!) His trainer will send us a standardized form with her ratings and comments. The one question we are most interested in seeing the answer to is the one that asks, "Do you want to see more of this dog?"--meaning: "Do you think this dog should go into the breeding program?" Although this rating in and of itself won't determine Ansel's future as a potential stud, it is the first hoop that he has to clear to move onward.

So stay tuned!

Ansel and his studly self...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Human-Animal Bond Conference

Natural Disasters... What about the Animals?


Sept 24, 2011
8:30am - 4:00 pm

This conference will take place in Manhattan KS and via a live webcast. Go to this page to view the livestream:

* Who Should Participate? *
Animal Owners
University Students/Faculty/Staff
Cooperative Extension Professionals
Public Safety Personnel (Police, Fire Fighters, Health Care Providers, etc.)
Staff of Pet-related Organizations

Sponsored by Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine, K-State Research and Extension, and the Family Caregiving and Companion Animals Communities of Practice, members of the eXtension National Initiative.

Please contact me if you would like more information or if I can answer any questions for you. Please share broadly!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

No New Report, But...

I just had to share this video with all of you:

This is KSDS Service Dog, Elf, showing off his mean skills! And our friend, Lisa Rickards behind the camera! She is quite the photographer/videographer. This photo of Ansel that she took during our swim date with Hosta and Spark made it into the official CCI newsletter this month--a surprise for us when we opened it up and there was our little man staring at us! (Page 9, all you CCI subscribers out there).

Every day is a good day with no "release" phone call from CCI. Next report (if we make it that far) is September 28.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

First official report from advanced training

We received our first report today on Ansel in advanced training.

He's doing well, has adjusted to his new home and seems to be showing his skills as expected. He has shown some insecurity in new situations, but looks to the trainers for confidence and responds well. He made it through the temperament tests and the initial medical tests, but the more in depth tests are still to come since he's a potential breeder.

The vomiting and abnormal scratching that we dealt with has magically disappeared and we are quite surprised AND thankful about that! The trainer said that he knows his commands and walks nicely on a loose leash and has done well with grooming.

As we well know, advanced training is a day to day ride that could end at any moment, but for the time being, our little man is hanging in there.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

CCI Hero Dog!

Watch this story of a CCI service dog finding help for her person after he was hit by a car in his wheelchair. Again, tissue needed!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Why I Love Dogs

You must see this. Have tissue nearby.

Dog Stays by Fallen Master's Side During Funeral

Source: Navy SEAL's Dog Mourns Master | NBC San Diego

Saturday, August 20, 2011

1st week update

Since Ansel is now in advanced training and unable to secure internet access, we (Deb and I) will be adding updates. I apologize up front if the stories are not quite up to Ansel's vivid imagination!

We have heard from our sources that Ansel has seemed to adapt well to his new home and work environment. Here is a picture of Ansel with his kennel mate Dembre.

Deb, myself and Lassiter attended the monthly meeting in Kansas City and had a great time. We got to see new pup Feldon:

and new pup Carlton:

Who is being raised by new first time puppy raisers!!

Here's a pic of Lassiter working with the hula hoop while being distracted with the toy. He did pretty good!

and last but not least, Putnam doing what he does best :^)

We left Lassiter in Kansas City so he would be there when his VPR arrives back in town. I'm sure it will be a great time when Lassiter sees his Mom again! Thanks to her for allowing us to keep him. He was a joy to have in the house and was also a great buddy to Ansel.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pity? or Party??

Lassiter here,

Just thought I'd chime in and give you the K-9 version of the last few days.

Ansel and I loaded up into a much nicer vehicle and went for a ridiculously LONG ride. It seemed to go on forever. Sure, we would stop every few hours and get to stretch, but we would always end up back in the car again.

After what seemed like an eternity (how long can you really play "you're it"), we finally stopped for the night in Sunbury, Ohio. It's well known to us pups what resides there. Only the greatest party spot in Ohio that's what! Where else can you go, get fed 2 squares, sleep on a clean floor, AND get to play with 20 other buds?

On Friday, we got to hang in the outdoor party cubes while the humans were working inside the building. Raj would bark everytime a human would come out so we could all look sad. Let me tell you though, when the humans were not around, it was party time baby!! I mean, we were having so much fun in those cubes, we were all drooling. It was quite funny when someone would come check on us and make comments about the drooling and how stressed the dogs looked. That my friends, was all a ruse so they wouldn't catch on to how much fun we were having!

The things we learned that day...parties at midnight, the secret paw shake, and who was the kennel wetter :^) I can't wait till February to get to experience all the fun!

So, Saturday comes and we get to attend the graduation ceremony. It was fun watching all of the "big" dogs get placed with their forever humans and it was fun to see the turn in pups up on stage. I was going to bark out some verbal jabs at Ansel, but thought better of it. Time to start acting my age you know. There seemed to be a lot of laughing and a lot of tears by the humans. Not sure about that since I was just scoping out all the potential friends for a later date.

After graduation, we went back to CCI and I got to say goodbye to Ansel. He was really looking forward to his new digs and when he learned he was rooming with Dembre, that made it even better! I can only imagine the things those guys are doing right now.

After that sad time for the humans, we got back into the car and made that ridiculously LONG ride home. Not sure why we don't fly, seems like it'd be a lot faster and much more comfortable!

Made a pit stop in Indianapolis to see some of Deb's family. I had a ton of fun and got to meet some new young friends and a couple older dog friends.

I found out that I'll be going home Thursday night, back to MY human, so I talked TBG and Deb into taking me swimming one last time. I've really enjoyed the lake while I've been here. I'm still not fond of dock diving, I'll leave that one for the crazy dogs like Ansel.

NO WAY I'm jumping from this

I do like to swim though!

Deb took some video of my impersonation of Michael Phelps!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

It's Done

Ansel after the ceremony...looking ahead to his future

Dear Readers,

Thank you so much to all who responded to the $5.00 challenge. CCI has received many wonderful gifts in Ansel's name. It means a lot to us. For those of you who are just tuning in but would like to donate, the links are posted in the right-hand pane.

Mark and I debated about what to do with this post...should we attempt to give a moment-to-moment description of the entire experience? Should we try to make it funny? (Talk about a challenge!) Should we include a list of all those whom we would like to thank for taking part and helping us with this journey?

We finally decided that the best we could do would be to share our core sentiment. Surprisingly (especially for those of you who know both of us), that core is the same.

It was just as hard as we thought it would be...walking him to the kennel, taking off his collar, locking him in, and turning and walking away...well, although we might have 240 posts on this blog, we don't have adequate words to describe that kind of sorrow. And yet, even with all of that, there was still an underlying sense of having contributed, done our "job" as it were, and finally paying back, in some small measure, all of the good that Jeb created during his working career.

We think too, that having Lassiter helped eased the way, and we marvel yet again how the stars align, and how out of great sadness comes hope and comfort.

To see pictures of the journey, visit this link:

Questions for us? Leave a comment and we'll respond. We'll keep posting about Lassiter's adventures and we should receive monthly progress reports on Ansel--first one is due August 31! We'll certainly post those too!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My Challenge to You Readers

The time is drawing near...and all that crud. Anywho!

All this talk of graduation, turn-in and the good work that CCI does got me to thinking...that along with the fact that I noticed that we now have had more than 5000 "new" visitors to this site! Awesome!

So, I have a challenge for all of my readers. IF you have enjoyed reading this blog even a little bit over the past 17 months, would you consider sending $5.00 in my name (that's Ansel III in case you've forgotten) to CCI? Wouldn't it be so EXCELLENT (think Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure) if every one of you 5000 people sent just $5.00? I mean, $5.00--that's just 2 cents per post! A total of $25,000 for CCI!

To donate $5.00 in my name, go to

and click on "one-time donations."

If you are feeling frisky, and would like to donate $25 (or more) visit my own personal gift registry at CCI (go check it out in any event. It really is cute):

Just to show that I can walk the talk, I strong-armed TBG and SWMBO into sending the very first "Ansel" donation today!

Thanks everyone!

Monday, August 8, 2011

A couple videos of the boys at play

and here's Lassiter the great Ambusher!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Last Few Days...Last Few Pictures

Deb and I said our goodbyes at the nursing home

Goodbye, Friend-of-Jeb!

Goodbye birdies!

Goodbye everyone! Thanks for helping to train me!

We also stopped by the lake for some good fun

SWMBO finally got it!

Remember this picture from when I was just a wee pup?

Here I am training Lassiter
How to look magestic

How to share

How to do an awesome lap!

Seriously...I didn't train that!

Hold down the fort, young man!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

It's hot! Let's go swimming

Obedience classes that were supposed to start today have been moved to September when it's cooler. It was just a little too hot for us indoor spoiled pups today!

So, I got talking to Lassiter and decided I'd try to convince TBG to go swimming at the lake. I thought for sure I would be irresistible, but sadly, it didn't work.

TBG is still recuperating from his barefoot'n Sunday and was in no mood to go to the lake. Maybe later this week!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Dog Days of Summer

Another hot summer day. This one's a little different though. Normally it's cool in the morning and blazing hot after lunch, but not today. We left for our morning walk, but as soon as I stepped out the front door, this muggy, humid, HOT air smacked me and Lassiter right upside our heads. It was as if it was raining hot water! TBG said it reminded him of Florida. I just thought it was ridiculous, especially when we just left a nice cool, dry house.

Anyway, we went for an extra long walk, something like 4 miles. Passed the cows that were being moved, passed the horses and even passed a couple of road kills! When we finally made it back to the cool zone, I figured we'd get a nice long cool break...NOPE, we drank some water and headed into town.

We walked around town, down by the river, in a few stores and also played at the kids' playground. I introduced Lassiter to my favorite slides and climbing spots! We really worked hard this morning on our commands. Gotta get as much practice as I can, college is just around the corner.

Some of you might remember the train pics from last fall. There's a picture of Lassiter when he was just a little guy!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Video of our time raising Ansel

Since we are very close to taking Ansel to "college", we put together a little video of our time together. He'll always hold a special place in our lives and hope that he brings as much joy to his next family.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Must Watch!

KSDS Future Guide or Service Dog Hosta's Goodbye

Thanks for the good times, Hosta! My humans and me wish you all of the best!

Quality work at the Nursing Home Today

Another day where I introduce my buddy Lassiter to some of my peeps! We went to the nursing home this morning (after walking the "Gauntlet" at sunrise). We strolled thru all the areas and I explained the new guy to everyone. I even had Lassiter try out some skills!

and just in case you think we don't have warm weather out here...

Thankfully though, right after I took this picture, a huge storm rolled in bringing LOTS of needed rain. It also had high wind and a lot of lightning! I was very proud of Lassiter, he didn't mind it a bit. We sat out on the porch until the rain starting pelting us.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

With a little help from my friends

Lassiter thought he'd give me some practice before turn in. I wonder if this is something I'll work on at Canine College?

Friday Work, Saturday Play!

Hello to my adoring fans, Ansel is in the house!!

Thought I'd update everyone on the happenings of the last couple of days. I've been going to work at K-State A LOT! Yesterday after work, me and Lassiter went to town and had dinner at the Pizza Hut. Talk about some good smells...boy howdy, my nose was working O.T. We had to show off our commands while the pizza was cooking. TBG forgot he had the camera until Lassiter was working on his commands, so no pics of me working.

Afterwards we went passed the big statues in town and on our way out, stopped at the Dairy Queen for a little refreshment!

Woke up this morning and after breakfast, TBG asked if I wanted to show Lassiter the lake. Yeah, I know...silly question huh! Of course I'd LOVE to show my bud the lake. I had TBG take pics so everyone would see the action!

This first one was after I had to coax Lassiter out into the water. He was hesitant at first, but once he realized how cool the water was, he dove right in!

I tried to show Lassiter how much fun it was to dock dive. He finally took the plunge, but I don't think he liked it as much as me. After jumping one time, he preferred going in from the shore!

We had a GREAT time and it wore us out! We headed back to the house and after lunch, Deb decided it was bath time since we needed to be clean for a trip to the Nursing Home tomorrow.
We had a nice, cool outdoor bath. Nothing beats a cool bath on a hot day.

Last I checked on Lassiter, his eyes were rolled back and he was snoring! What a rookie, LOL.

Ansel out.