First, the puppy truck.
Puppy trucks are a blast. They come bearing tiny, fluffy, needy little balls of fur. These pups are around 8-weeks-old and are absolute blank slates. They are also a total mystery to the raisers that come to pick them up. All the raisers know is the breed, color and first letter of their new pup's name. It's all very exciting. The pups are presented one-by-one as their names are announced and immediate partnerships are formed. There is a photographer there to capture the first moments of meeting the new charge. There are cheers and a never-ending chorus of "ooos" and ahhs." There are lots of smiles all around.
Regardless of the bittersweet feelings, attending a puppy truck is always a very positive experience. The new puppies always play on heartstrings, and the returning pups give their raisers a sense of pride, knowing that they have given the dog their best chance and have succeeded with their portion of the training.
Saturday, I attended our puppy truck in Phoenix. The Flagstaff group received two new babies, and transferred one pup to another raiser in California. Our two new puppies are a male yellow lab named Joust and a male black lab named Fernandez. They are unavoidably adorable, of course.
Welcome to CocoPups Joust and Fernandez. We promise you exciting adventures, positive challenges, and unconditional love.
Now for my second favorite element of the puppy raising life - breakthroughs.
Kyra and I hit that this week. She's always been a good dog, but this week...wow. Just wow. I am so excited at how much maturation I have seen in Kyra.
I'm so proud.
Patience pays off profitably with these dogs. Kyra just needs to be treated with patience and encouragement, and she loves to work. We can walk right by screaming children without a reaction. We can sit in a coffee shop for 4 hours and she will lay at my feet and ignore everything else. We can go mini golfing and she won't attempt to chase the balls. An overexcited two-year-old can run straight up to her and she will sit still and calm and let him go crazy in her face. She doesn't relieve without her command.
Is there still work to be done?
Absolutely. There are always improvements, setbacks, mistakes and additional breakthroughs to accomplish. But as Kyra's recall date creeps remarkably closer, she continues to earn the confidence and pride that I continually have in her.
Puppy trucks and breakthroughs. This is what makes my world go round.