Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Mini-me, you complete me...

Hi there, Boo here, and I'm writing an update on Orianna for mom since Mom is busy at the moment. All I can say is, I love this little thing--Sawyer tells me that she is my CLONE! So, you know what that means, if you've ever seen Austin Powers...I have a Mini-me! Her name is Orianna, but mom and dad sometimes call her Annabelle (Ahh-nah-belle). She is working on her sit, and I have to say she is getting pretty good at it. I kind of laugh at her sometimes because she has to do all the stuff they used to make me so, haha! But, I cheer her on. She likes to play with Ducky, and let me tell you, if it was anyone but Mini-Me, I would NOT allow that kind of thing. She hops on all four legs when she plays sometimes, which is pretty funny. So cute--how could she not be...she's my clone, haha! As if anyone would not think she was cute? Anyway, I'm off now to go play (Mini-Me is in her crate right now napping--which I do chuckle at a little since I never get crated anymore). Tata!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

A Puppy Raiser's Prayer

A Puppy Raiser’s Prayer

by Colby Atkins

Dear Lord, thank you for this little angel
you have put into my care
I pray that you will bless us individually
and our training as a pair
Help my puppy to learn and grow
To be healthy, swift, and bright
Fill her little brain with knowledge
help her discern wrong from right.
Watch over me as I raise her
help me to know just what she needs
Give me the balance of patience, firmness, tenderness and humor
That I need to teach her and to lead.
For I know that with your grace and peace
our success will ensue
Because I trust that you not only have plans for me
But plans for her, too
For whether graduate, breeder, or release
Is destined to be our pinnacle
I pray you’ll guide the hand that guides the paws
that will one day be someone’s miracle.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Dear Mom: No More Dogs...Love, the Cats

So, a couple of mornings ago, I was just lying on the couch, minding my own business when suddenly, I heard the bathtub water running! Well, if there's one thing I will get off my butt for, it's to go splash around and play in the tub (hey, contrary to popular belief, not ALL cats hate water! Roxie does, but that's only because she floated down the avenue that one time...) Anyway, so I proceeded to the running water, when what to my wondering eyes should appear but ANOTHER black D-O-G! Yep, they'd brought another one. Oh well, back to the couch, I suppose...here's Roxie...

Well I, unlike Sawyer, knew that there was something more sinister at work the second I saw this new black creature (girls are smarter than boys, after all). I knew the moment I saw her that it was official--the Mom person (or Warden, as I like to call her) liked Kekah so much that it had finally happened: she had cloned her. She is so crazy about that big, black buffoon that she ACTUALLY had her cloned. Ridiculous. I mean, I was personally offended. If anything was beautiful enough to be cloned, surely it was me. But no, instead she clones the dog, and now we have two. Sigh.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

We've Only Just Begun...

Hello, hello! Well, I was SO tired yesterday that getting Orianna's post done was an accomplishment in itself! So, now that I'm well rested, here' s a little about our first day together!

I got up at ugh, four, to go to the airport to pick up baby Orianna. Her flight wasn't scheduled to be in until 7:21, but alas, Kekah's was early getting in, so I figured I'd better be there. Well, Orianna's flight was actually late getting in, and they didn't actually get her off of the plane until about 8:30!!! Poor thing, she was a mess and half, so we trotted back to the "animal room" at air cargo for a quick bath with the hose, which unfortunately was cold water and so I had to make the bath just enough to get the-um-"undesirable material" off! Then we headed back to Macon.

Once we got home, the day was pretty good...my first impressions of Orianna are that she is a very confident puppy--more confident than either Rogue or Kekah were at her age. She is independent, but not assertive (I know assertive, I did raise Rogue after all!). I have only had her a day and half so far, but I already can tell she responds to correction really well- I can give her one correction and she's done with whatever she was doing, which usually involves something she has decided to chew on! (Rogue, for example, kept coming back for more until about the 20th correction, when maybe he'd get it, lol!) She is quiet in crate for the most part...she has whined a bit, but not a lot. Kathy K, SER's old puppy program manager had taught me the trick of tying a string around the crate door and when puppy barks to rattle the crate just a tad, and this seemed to do the trick for Orianna. Like I said, one correction and she seems to get it...what a great little girl!
Kekah and she also seem to get along very well and play nicely together. I was a bit concerned until I saw them together since Kekah, having been a runt, has in the past had a bit of trouble playing nicely with some dogs (others she does fine with), but she is great with Orianna when we let them play together. I have also put a baby gate between them some to let Orianna also play by herself with us, also.

As for eating, I was a little worried since Orianna had only eaten a handful of food altogether yesterday...not even a whole cup! My other pups have been voracious eaters, so this was different. However, this morning I mixed the Eukanuba with some Iams (the PPM and I decided to switch her food since she hasn't seemed to eat the Eukanuba well even with her BC) and she ate it right up, almost the whole cup, so I was pleased with that.

I can tell her BC has worked some with her on sit (thanks, Martha!) because she will always sit and look up at me if she wants to be picked up, like she doesn't expect to be picked up if she hasn't been sitting, which is great. She has only had one accident in house which was last night, but her tummy was upset so I think it was nerves from a rough day yesterday! She also seems to walk on the leash well, which is nice since I've seen other raisers have pups that did the "dead dog" on the leash, lol!
All in all, she seems happy, playful, and bright. I am really enjoying her so far. I am planning to work some on her name today...we did it a bit last night with her dinner, so this will be our second little training session as I'm trying to let her ease into her new home a bit. I'm hoping to get a picture in her baby cape today, so hopefully I'll get that up pretty soon! What a great little dog :-)

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

A long day already

Oh, you guys are never going to believe the day I've had...

First, for the first time, I was taken away from my brothers and sisters and placed in some sort of small, plastic prison cell. Then (and you're not going to believe this) I was rolled onto some sort of metal contraption that actually started to FLY!!!! Well, when I was taken off of the metal ship, the air was super hot and stuffy, humid. Well, a person met me there who calls herself "Mom". She declared that I was "a mess" (hey, I was in that plastic box for hours...what's a girl to do?) and we went into a small room with a HOSE! She proceeded to pull out paper towels, doggie shampoo, garbage bags, and towels. Once I was cleaned up, we climbed into yet another metal contraption...this one did not fly, it was of the sort that stays on the ground and moves. We rode for a while, and then went into a new home I hadn't been into before! I had to take another bath, since my airport bath was only "just enough to get home". Then I got some breakfast, although I was more interested in exploring than eating! And then the craziest thing of all happened: I met someone who looked like a giant me! I am told this one's name is Kekah, and we laid on the floor together and chewed nylabones, which was a pretty fun, I have to admit.
By the way, my name is Orianna II, and I'm from the CCI "O" litter of Senta and Beckett, mom and dad respectively. We were born on May 28, 2007, Memorial Day. I was puppy number six out of eleven...in our litter were four boys and seven girls. The boys names are Otis III, Oregon III, Oswego II, and Oskar. The other girls besides me are Okelani, Ocala, Opal VI, Olga III, Onalee, and Olive III. Our litter was my mom's 5th and last litter!
Well, I'm beat and I need a nap. The mom person tells me she'll write a little from her later and post some pictures from today, but for now, I'm off. Too-da-loo!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Meet the family!

Hi everyone and welcome to the blog. This blog is all about CCI puppy Orianna II and our journey to raise her for Canine Companions for Independence. First, a little info about CCI if you aren't famliar: CCI is a non-profit organization that raises highly trained assistance dogs for people with disablities. What do we have to do with that? Well, I'm a puppy raiser for CCI, which means I am responsible for raising the puppy from age 8 wks. until about 15-18 months. While the pup is with me, I'll teach her about 20 commands, manners, and socialize her in public as well as getting to do all the fun puppy things like walks, playtime, bathtime, feeding, grooming, etc. When she's old enough, she'll turn back into CCI for advanced training!

So, who will be along for this journey? My whole family (including the furry famiuly members!) So, here's a little introduction to us all (I'll have the full intro of Orianna herself up tomorrow!):

Colby -- puppy raiser in chief-- I'm 22 years old and I started raising puppies for CCI when I was, hmm...eighteen! I've raised two pups for CCI, Rogue, who was released for alert barking and now lives with my mom, and Kekah, who was released for prey drive and separation anxiety and now lives back at home with me, but more on her later! When I'm not working with puppies, I'm a full-time author. I write adult fiction, and I don't think I'll ever stop! I love to scrapbook in my spare time and read other author's material, particularly mysteries and fantasy since it is a vacation from the type of material I myself write.

Brian-- unofficial puppy raiser-- Brian is 23 and we've been married for one year. Brian was my high school sweetheart :-) He graduated from UGA with a degree in Finance and Sport Studies and is currently on the lookout for the right job for him. In his spare time you can usually find him watching anything (or everything) on ESPN or playing golf! He may not be an official PR, but he's certainly in the know about all things CCI and the techniques of puppy raising, and he is so wonderfully helpful with the CCI pups!

Kekah-- the Boo dog-- Hi I'm Kekah, AKA Boo, and I'm three years old.
I was born in April '04 to Neelia and Quester II. I was the runt of a litter of 7, and I topped out at 45 lbs. People sometimes call me a miniature lab. I love my stuffed Ducky and peanut butter. I love car rides and to ham it up for the camera, which my mom pulls out a lot.

Roxie--the diva cat-- I'm Roxie, and I'm the boss around
here. I'm a 5 lb., 2 year old himalayan mix, but don't let my size fool you...I'm a pistol! I survived Hurricane Katrina as a kitten when someone pulled me out of a sewer, so I hate the rain. But what I do like is to try to climb the curtains and knock things over, because hey, I'm punishing those humans...that hurricane was their doing, I am sure of it! A clever ruse under which to capture me and force me into captivity...

Sawyer-- the lion cat-- My name is Garfield, erm, I mean Sawyer and I'm 4 years old, 13 pounds. Yeah, yeah, I know...I look like a lion. I've heard. I spend my days sleeping on the chair, but sometimes I'll move over to the couch. If I feel like it. And if I was a football player (which I wouldn't be, because who wants to use up that much of your nap time doing something athletic?) I'd be a lineman. Haha, get it...Lion-man?

So, that's the family! We're all excited about Orianna II arriving tomorrow! Yes! Another dog in the house, finally I'm not outnumbered! Ugh, another one??? Ok, so some more excited than others...Anyhow, I'll be going to pick up Orianna tomorrow at the Atlanta airport at o'dark thirty. Hopefully tomorrow night we'll get some pictures up and post again! Cheers!