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.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Lassiter: On Location

Lassiter here,

Thanks to my buddy Ansel, I now know there is a spell-check option! The following is my report for Wednesday, July 20th, 2011.

We were up at the crack of that big yellow/orange thing in the sky. Had breakfast, went out and took care of business, then took a short rest while Deb and TBG (now I know why Ansel refers to Mark that way...he's a little chunky). After they finished eating, we geared up and went for a looooong walk. I got to meet more of Ansel's friends. The cows were already milling around near the fence, then we came upon these two GIANT animals. Ansel said they were called horses; I just called them Gigantors!

Here's a couple shots of us checking out the big guys (hey...kinda like TBG).

Say, Chief...can I go for a ride?

Seriously, can I??

After meeting the horses, we headed back and spent the day working on being quiet and staying in my "downs". I think I'm getting better about not springing to action quite so quickly!

After dinner tonight, Ansel and I were run through our commands and TBG said something about working on "lap". It took a little while to catch on, but once he broke out those high-value cheese sticks, I was all over that command!

Then we worked on "jump" and "off". I think I did pretty good with those!

Enough for today, see you next time!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Great pictures of the swim date with Hosta and Spark

Just thought I'd add some pictures from last week's swim day with KSDS pups Hosta and Spark. Hosta's puppy raiser Lisa took some really great shots!

Here was Hosta doing his impression of a frog.

This one is just mystifying, Spark is hovering in mid air!

Here's Ansel's impression of Gene Simmons.

and finally, the BEST picture of Ansel...looks remarkably like Jeb.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Trip to the Grocery

I decided to take my new bud Lassiter to check out some small town grocery action tonight. We loaded into the blue bomb and zipped into town (OK, TBG did the driving). Once there we donned our work'n duds and went into the air conditioning. Got to introduce Lassiter to my peeps and everyone enjoyed meeting him. They kept going on and on about how calm we were and how we just sat there getting some good rub'n!

Lassiter got some close and personal "cart" time and boy was I happy about that. I'm not a fan of walking behind those things...they block the view!

When we finished, the checker was short handed, so I grabbed Lassiter and tried to show him how to bag the groceries. Who knew that he didn't know NOT to put the heavy items on top of the bread?? ROOKIE!

Afterwards, we loaded back up into my ride and headed home. With the bags of groceries in the car, it left little room for two pups. We did our best and found a way to get situated. The humans were pretty impressed!

Finally, I showed Lassiter how to take self portraits. Not bad for his first try!

Time for a little play time and then some well deserved nap time.

My first post

Here are a few things I've lerned so far at TBG's camp.

1. Cows smell.
2. Dogs CAN walk on gravel rowds.
3. Not everyone cuts there grass.
4. Country life is NOT laid back!

Here's me and Ansel on the "Gauntlet"

Sorry for any missed spelling, just lerning how to tipe.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

VPRs Do More Before 8am...

...then most people do all day!

Has it ever been busy! Yesterday we loaded up and headed to KC. We stopped to see one of TBG's friends and then went on to see the "big dogs"...that is, Suzanne, the Puppy Program Manager and one of the other trainers were in town and led a puppy workshop. All my buds were there, including some new folks that I didn't know. I will say this...humans sure can talk!

Afterward, we all went to Putnam's pad and had a huge rumpus and celebrated the three of us getting turned in next month--me, and Raj and Chloe.

Here's the human cake--thanks Charon!

TBG and SWMBO kept a pretty close eye on me as I was the only, uh, intact pup. But, I was on my BEST behavior and just romped and played like a regular guy (well, except for the fact that I had to stop every so often to mark my territory...).

Now THIS is how puppy play time should be!

Then came SURPRISE #2! Remember that? Well, get this--Lassiter, my dear friend and fellow pup-in-training--came home with us! His VPR had a personal situation come up so he is staying with us indefinitely. Now, the ride home was a bit of a challenge, but thanks to Hosta, I learned that dogs can actually ride in the floorboard.

Hosta trained me well!

It's been a hoot having Lassiter around. The humans took us out for a 2.5 mile walk this morning with lots of training. We even introduced Lassiter to the cattle in the pasture and the coyotes calling.

Here we are after the walk.

Then we had puppy play time--all before 8am!

After puppy play time.

Can't wait to see what we'll get done before lunch!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

One Surprise Completed...One to Go!

Yesterday was Surprise #1...and it was a blast! KSDS pups-in-training Hosta ( and Spark ( came to my neck of the woods and we spent the day together. Hosta isn't really a pup--he's older than me! But Spark is just four months old and fearless AND tireless!

We did the in-town thing (statues, the old post office, jail, and depot) along with the stores on Main Street. Folks were friendly, as they always are, and cars stopped for us when we crossed the street. This kind of mystified and surprised the city folk!

After that we went to the house for some lunch and relaxation...only there wasn't much relaxation to be had! Next, we headed to the lake and did some dock diving and then went for a boat ride. We took turns jumping off the platform. I was going to show these guys "how it's done" but they both outshined me...especially Spark! No "introduction-to-the-water" for him. He just followed the big dogs and jumped right in and swam and swam and SWAM! We watched SWMBO ski, just to give the guys the full experience of being out in the water. Hosta didn't care, but Spark insisted he was next! He was quite hilarious--and amazing! He was like the energizer bunny and just didn't want to stop. SWMBO predicted he'd sleep for 24 hours!

OK, OK...geez! (SWMBO insists that I put this part in). Let's just say I wasn't on my best "maleness" took hold and I had to be in time out on and off throughout the play time. Geez! What is this...true confessions?

Anyway, here are some pics. And don't forget...Surprise #2 happens today!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The reason we are Puppy Raisers

The question was asked, so I thought I'd post up the answer for those that do not know. For those that knew Jeb, sorry if it brings tears.

Deb and I were lucky to have received Jeb, a CCI facility dog back in 2000. Deb worked with him everyday at various locations; nursing homes, home visits, schools, Kansas, Oregon and even Florida. Jebster was a well traveled lad! The things he could get people to do, the smiles he brought, the things we learned from him will never be forgotten. He was always happy and always willing to work and meet people. Sure he had his "special" know, the kind that would spoil him and just let him be a dog; Uncle Bob, Paula, Candace and CP all were great friends of Jeb (sorry I can't name each and every one). There are more stories of Jeb and his impact on everyone than I could ever type at one sitting, so I'll leave it at that.

After Jeb died in December 2008, Deb and I decided that there could never be another Jeb. We gave away all of our dog "stuff" and decided to not have any more pets. Jeb was the 3rd dog we had had and lost in 11 years and to be honest, just didn't want to go through any more loss.

Deb went back to North Central for the February graduation in 2010 (her 10 yr anniversary of team training with Jeb) to hopefully put a bookend on that part of our lives. It was a sad event and happy at the same time. As she was leaving, Suzanne stopped and talked to her, asking what our plans were. Since Deb no longer was a practicing therapist, a service dog would no longer work out. Suzanne asked "why not be a puppy raiser"?

She came back to Kansas and laid that option out for me (one that we had NEVER thought of). With a lot of thought, we decided that raising a puppy for CCI would be the BEST way of keeping the memory of Jeb alive. Not much time went by after that until we picked up Mr. Ansel at the Kansas City airport. Thus, the new chapter with CCI began.

Here are a few pictures of the Jeb Master, the first one epitomizes his personality.

Jeb was a special dog, but what we've come to realize is that all these dogs are special. We were just fortunate to be with one for 8 great years.