Friday, December 17, 2010

2 weeks to go




Nothing new around here, we put up our xmas tree and Tandy does not bother with it. Ha, i was a bit worried what he would do but he is great so he does nothing to it. He has been having fun running around the yard like a maniac in the snow. I refuse to go to the dog park anymore since my daughter and i got bit there and since it is slippery and the last thing i need is to get slammed over by a dog.

We have 2weeks and 3days left with this lovely dog, just trying to enjoy every last second♥

Monday, December 6, 2010

A blanket of his own


One thing that we were told would be nice for Tandy to have at the kennel is his own blanket that can be consistant for him when he goes away on weekends during training with his own smells etc, and since Tandy chewed apart his blankets that he had before (he was good til about 9months and he started chewing them!) i thought i would buy one at the thrift store and applique his name on it!

Festive dog!


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Last month with Tandy boy!


We are enjoying our last month here with Tandy. Still continuing on with daily training. But mostly loving him and taking him on really long walks, enjoying our last days with a dog in the house.

Last week we took a trip to the kennel at NSD where he will be going back for advanced training. We met all his kennel mates that he will be living with and learned about his new routine there. He got to explore his new sleeping area and play in the run with the others, Tandy is the youngest one to go back, but just as ready as the rest of them. He is still exceptional in training and with real trainers taking him in and helping him he will go even further.

We are not going to get another puppy any time soon, we have a big move coming up and once that is all done we will see how life really is without a dog in it. We may do it again or we may just puppy sit for other NSD dogs, but that is not for a while. No decisions being made now.

I have no idea what the day will be like that we bring him back but will for sure blog about it as part of the project, i want to remember that too. Until then, we are taking lots of photos, hugging him lots and treating him like the king he is!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010




Some radomness from Tandy's life here with us. His time to go to the kennel is quickly approaching and i am reminicing all the times and things we have done here with him. 1 year ago this time we were gearing up for a new puppy to come occupy our home and getting so excited for it. How can a year go so fast? How can a puppy grow so much in that time? Its amazing what he has accomplished in the last 11 months here, and i can't even imagine the life ahead of him, this is only the beginning of his life. Wow they are going to be a lucky bunch of people, the family who receives Tandy. I hope there is a way to keep in touch when he goes to live with his forever family. What a happy and sad thing this all is. Oh my little Tandy!

(pic #1 the kids love to let him lick their feet over and over! pic #2 Tandy just hanging out amungst the mess of our lives pic #3 "the visit")

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Birthday dog!


Tomorrow is Tandy's 1st birthday! Wow, how he has grown! While he has no clue the kids are very excited for him, to give him special treats! He has been doing great here, we have been back into the swing of things, bringing him to our sports program on Tuesdays and going to the dog park a lot.

Also i got the call/email a few days ago stating when Tandy is due back for his advanced training! January 3rd is the big day, so soon! It is great timing too as we have some life changing things coming up that would make it more difficult to train him. So a couple more months and our project is officially over, how can time go so fast? I have confidence in him and can' t wait to see what he amounts to. In the meantime, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE BEST PUPPY EVER!!!!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Thanksgiving




I have been searching lately for some new and different outings with Tandy. I am getting bored of malls and stores and libraries! So this weekend we took him to the pumpkin patch, our annual thanksgiving outing to pick out pumpkins and walk through the corn maze! I have never taken him out as a working dog in his coat on grass, i was curious as he is not to "eliminate" while wearing it but whenever i walk him and there is grass he is used to do doing so. Anyway, he was fine, i think he knows now when he has his coat on what is expected of him.

His birthday is coming up, he will be officially 1 year old on the 29th of this month, the kids want to give him a big peanut butter ball with dog food in it and sing to him, maybe buy him a new toy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Crate kids!



My daughter was having fun in Tandy's crate the other day, then he wanted in too! Just thought the pictures were cute of the two of them. She informed me again that her best friend is Tandy! (PS, she was not in there for long, nor did she actually sleep in it!)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A walk in the park..




So tonight we had puppy class in our local park that houses all sorts of animals, chickens, llamas, deer, ducks, goats, ponies, turkeys etc. The class intention was to get the dogs to remain calm and focused while acknowledging their presence but not zoning in on them (the animals). Except for one moment where Tandy sorta dodged at the turkey he did pretty good. The goose poop was quite hard for him to resist as well. As always it was fun to watch all the various puppies reactions and see how much they have instinctive behavior. Tandy has a thing for squirrels and its constant work on walks to get him to "leave it", he is doing better, but off leash if he see's a squirrel he will chase it for miles and nothing else can enter his mind during that. Funny and annoying, i am sure we can all imagine! I live like a 15min walk from that park so i will be able to try the techniques out we learned.
It was refreshing to do some different training with him, and apparently from now on we will just be meeting in public settings like this.

We are getting closer to our final days together, Tandy and I, he has been in our home a little over 8 months and has grown and learned so much (so have I) when the winter comes back it will feel so weird, we got Tandy in the dead of winter all cute and tiny, and we will see him off this winter all grown up and ready for advanced training. Its amazing how fast a year can go! ♥

Friday, September 3, 2010

Rainy day



Sitting on the porch watching the rain storm, getting a little bit wet, being the good boy he is!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Just another day.


Not much new or exciting going on around here lately. Tandy has been visiting a lot of different puppy sitters as we have been camping a lot. He has been doing great at the sitters and they all tell me how wonderful Tandy is, of course we know that but it is good to know he is well behaved and awesome for others as well.

So another heat wave is here, and Tandy has been relaxing under the fan not asking for much. Walks are minimal as it is so damn hot, we wait til the evenings and even then he walks so slow taking care not to over heat, poor furry guy.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Training dog

(playing with his bone, even without thumbs!)

We had puppy class last night, first one in a month or so. I guess things are all messed up with summer vacations etc. I have to admit i was a little worried at how Tandy would be, as we have not been training too much here, a bit for sure here and there but now as much as i should be! Summer seems to have added a different touch to training. Either way, Tandy amazed me once again and i felt confident in my training after it was over. Whew! I always feel a little funny at puppy class, cause while Tandy will never be "mine" i know him so well and feel sometimes as though i can read his mind and communicate with him in other ways then just giving him commands. Not unlike the way a mother and child communicate with one another when the infant does not speak. Its funny and i often find myself laughing at/with Tandy during class and talking to him so softly about what he is doing. (this may sound so strange, but whatever!)

Its fun to watch all of his siblings, now almost 10 months old doing so well and listening and obeying so wonderfully (Titan, Tawny, Tali, Tootsie). We did the "visit" with the trainer back and forth calling him from me to him to visit and i felt worried and shy for Tandy going to him and listening to him, even though that is exactly what he should be doing and he did well with it. I guess i have been thinking of Tandy more as my pet or my companion of sorts and doing this exercise reminded me that some day he will be working with trainers and doing an awesome job with them, because i was able to raise him to do so.

Tandy is feeling much better now that his "hot spots' have cleared up and i only had to put the cone on him once at night and never again. It was good for a photo op!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Space dog!

Camping puppy!





Tandy came camping with us this week, first time i have ever camped with a dog and first time he has ever camped! He had a blast on the beach, swimming and digging. My friend brought her retriever as well Daisy, who was not interested in Tandy at all but he kept trying to play with her. Unfortunately Tandy developed some "hot spots" and a bit of a sore ear while there, he is now on antibiotics and looks rather worn out. I think he might just sleep the next couple of days to recover from all the fun he had. I had bought him a tent to sleep in, to replace his crate but he was not too happy in there so he ended up in our tent, sleeping beside the kids. Made for a more relaxing sleep for both him and i sleeping together keeping an eye out for one another.

Saturday, July 31, 2010



I was really curious when we started this journey how the kids would react to having a dog in the house. Its been amazing watching them with Tandy, learning with him as he grows. He is a companion to them now, my oldest (9) reads on the couch and with a foot or hand draping over the edge pets and caresses Tandy as he reads. My youngest (almost 7) goes to Tandy when she is sad or upset using him as a pillow or a friend to talk to. He fits in here, aiding us all with constant companionship, like dogs do. This is new to our animal less family. Okay we had rats and a guinea pig and an aquarium, but not the same as a 70lb mammal who can warm your feet, be a pillow, a friend to talk to, cure boredom and make walking enjoyable. This journey has brought more to our lives then anything we have ever done as a family. These next few months left with him are going to be interesting and fulfilling as ever, and who knows maybe we will do it again..?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy dog!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Nutty puppy!

We woke up today and Tandy was jumping through the roof! Literally, jumped on to the couch and tried jumping like a kid on a trampoline! I took him out to "hurry hurry" and he was spinning around in circles trying to dart off the leash. So we packed him up and took him to the dog park to release some energy! Boy did that work, i vowed not to leave until he was more tired than tired. Luckily he found another retriever to go nuts with and some other labs, funny how all the retrievers stuck together! We tried to get him in the car after but he just plopped down on the ground under the car refusing to move, i had to lift his 71lb body into the car! Crazy pup!

Yesterday after walking to the library in the smoggy heat he just crashed on the floor like a big baby and let all the toddlers mall him to pieces! So funny to watch toddler yelling "doggie" across the room and coming for him patting him. Just what he has to get used to.

The kids and i are going camping next week so we will have more room in the car with out Papa so we are going to take him, we bought him a one person tent to sleep in! Haha..should be interesting!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Dog good byes..?


How do you say good bye to a dog? After dropping Tandy off at the puppy sitter again today i started to think about this. The kids hugged him and i pet him and turned around and left. but what does he know? What are dogs capable of thinking or sensing? I have no clue, i really don't know a lot about dogs, but i do know the day is fast approaching when Tandy goes back to the kennel at NSD and we have to say our final good byes. The kids and i were talking about this on the way home, wondering what we can do when we know it is time to give him back. We will ahve to come up with some kind of ritual that makes us feel good while being with him, like having a picnic at the dog park? hahaha I don't know...tears are welling in my eyes just thinking about it, thinking about how i have never loved a dog and now i have gone and done it, fell in love with a frisky puppy that is not even mine.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Puppy break


Still hot around here, summer has hit full force. We went camping last week and left Tandy with a puppy sitter, there is no way we could fit him and all our gear and kids in the car! He did well, although he had a bout of vomiting while there, must have ate something bad. I am feeling better about things, maybe all i needed was a little break from him.

We brought him to the pool yesterday, the kids swam and he wore his coat on the side in the shade with me. He seemed hot and i thought it would be funny if he dove in and swam around!

He is shedding like crazy, i vacuum one day and the next hair is everywhere, maybe i should brush him more? is this why people brush dogs? it must be nice to be brushed and have some hair removed..i try to think like a dog sometimes and think what he would like...but i am human in the end..haha

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Sweaty days..


We are having a severe heatwave here, while its nice it at times, it makes dealing with a puppy difficult. He has been lying by the fan pretty much for the last few days, we go for walks in the evenings when dark. I am feeling like i am not training him as much as i should be, but i am so hot that i don't want to touch him, he is a heat box himself with all that fur. I guess raising a puppy has its ups and downs, and i am in a bit of a low right now, hoping that i am doing this right, training him well and giving him enough time.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Tandy's first swim!!

video

Cottage pup!











This past week we took the family, including Tandy to Tobermory to the cottage. We had to pack a bit lighter to fit him in the back, but it worked out and we made it there. He did really well in the car with the little space that he had, we stopped a couple times and ran around with the kids. When we pulled up to the cottage and got out i had planned that i would open the back of the car and let Tandy go and see what happens! We are new to this leash free stuff, learning to trust him more and more off of it. The cottage is surrounded by trees and land so when i opened the door after the 4hour drive he jumped out and sat by my feet, looking at me, i told him to go ahead and pointed around, he darted off and ran around in circles like the crazy puppy he is! It felt so good to watch him be free after being so cramped up in the back!

We could not bring his crate with us so i was a little worried about night time, but we brought his blanket and he slept on the floor between the kids bunk beds and did great.

The other thing i was so excited for to watch him do was swim and boy did he swim! We brought and aqua kong and threw it in the water, he ran right in and swam like a pro got the kong and brought it back to us and dropped it at our feet! It was so awesome, he is a real Retriever!! Ha! He swam and wandered and swam and wandered, running through the forests and on the rocks of Tobermory, he was the happiest dog i have ever seen (i have not seen or watched many dogs!) It really made me love him and love having a dog around to play with and explore with...i never thought they could be so fun.

We took him into town with us as well, we went to a museum and a restaurant and the grocery store. Mainly because we did not want to leave him alone at the cottage and also because, well, we can! That is the benefit of a service puppy i guess.

Now we are home, all are tired, including Tandy who spent all day at home today sleeping after a tiring and exciting week of freedom and outdoors...man do i love summer time with a dog!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Loads of Love!


Tandy so tired after playing with his sister, he had to lay down to drink, i love when they do that, so cute!






The kids were playing vet and groomer with Tandy, he sure has a good life being spoiled and treated well, my daughter even used her own tooth brush to brush his teeth!










Tandy and Tawny (brother and sister) having some sibling play time, they were so dirty i had to leave them outside! Tandy was tired into the next day!










Tandy and Tawny relaxing on the deck after playing hard in the sunshine. Tandy is on the left and Tawny on right, he is a bit bigger than her.





Tuesday, June 8, 2010

BUSY PUP!!


We had puppy class in the mall tonight, there is a bit of a showcase going on there in the arena at the mall. NSD was hosting a Dog and pony show for special kids, trying to raise awareness of autism and of course NSD. It was busy, lots going on, tons of NSD dogs of all levels, and our class was led through a mic so that the mall could hear and see! Of course Tandy did great and was applauded later by an observer saying that he was "one of the better trained dogs". The thing is, they all are trained well, some dogs have off days just like we humans do. But i thought Tandy was amazing too!

Now he is laying on the floor passed out after a busy day of outings. This morning the kids and i walked uptown again with him, stopping in the bank, the gelato store, the dress store, the book store, the library, the park with the "zoo" and then home for a bit and out to class! Busy day, but nothing Tandy can't handle, he lives for it and makes me proud every second! ♥

Friday, June 4, 2010

Todays lesson is...


Tandy got neutered yesterday, big day for him! We had the whole day without him and got a glimpse of what things will be like when we finally have to give him back. The kids and i talked a lot about loss and the feelings that come with it and all the weirdness of it, like how you walk in the door and expect that loved one to be there then suddenly they are not. Yesterday, even though he was only at the vet for a day they were able to understand that a bit, and in 7 months or so we will feel that for real. But we have each other and we are embracing this into our lives. I have always felt that loss is something that humans avoid at all costs and don't embrace or discuss. Its very important to me to be able to show this to my kids and show them that it can be done and handled, and even though we will all shed tears of love and times of good we will remember and know we are doing a good thing, for someone else, and those are great lessons in life.

On a funny note, our street is under construction and so we have these constant construction workers outside, well today while walking Tandy i hear "Hi Tandy" in the cutest voice, one of the women was calling him and waving! Haha, must be fellow dog lover. I thought it was funny and cute at the same time.

We also found out that Tandy is a bit anemic and he is now on iron supplements, i guess with the digestive issues he has been having he has been unable to absorb the nutrients. It explains a lot about how he sleeps and/or lays around a lot! Maybe after a few weeks on these he will perk up a bit and i will see what life of a puppy is really like! Or that is just his personality and all will be the same! Who knows!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Hot days!




There has been a heat wave around here the last few days, Tandy has been choosing to lay around and do nothing, i go out to garden and let him out with me but he goes right back in after a couple minutes! Today we went for a nice walk to the library, we hung out there for a while, Tandy fell asleep at the library in the middle of the place, everyone had to go around him. I offered to move him but they did not want me to. We met lots of people and babies today, all who loved Tandy. It was nice to just hang out in air conditioning and meet new people. I think he enjoyed the air conditioning!! He didn't even flinch as he lay there and babies run around and by him, even stopping to touch him! I like being able to bring him out with us, its a fun adventure every time.


We are taking Tandy to the vet on Thursday to be neutered. I have never done this, i guess we drop him off and pick him up later. I am worried for him! I know he will be fine, all dogs get it done. Any of you dog owners have tips for me for when i bring him home?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010



Tandy enjoying a nice shower, after a rainy day in the mud outside!


























We were looking for some new experiences for Tandy last week. So we took him to a restaurant and bowling! It was my son's 9th birthday and so those are the things he wanted to do, and Tandy is part of the family now so he came along. I was not sure about the restaurant, but he was fine, lay on the floor mostly beside us while we ate. He was excited at first at the bowling alley but then realized after a couple minutes its just another place to lay down! He slept there actually amongst the noise of balls and pins being knocked over.