Thursday, July 30, 2015


Battier's 2nd report arrived today! It is just as amazing as her first one! I'm so proud of her and I know she has a special person out there that is waiting just for her!! She learned speak too! 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

4th week of Advanced Training....

What a treat! For the last 2 years on Chandra's (Shawn's) birthday we have asked our guests to bring toys for the dogs in Advanced Training. Today I received these 3 photos! They didn't come with names, but I think Battier is in them! 

Looks like Pippa, ?, Battier and ? 

I would bet money that this is Battier :) She looks so happy! She also looks good in Blue!

Release! So happy the Advanced Training dogs get to play with toys! 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Battier's Matriculation

I'll start with a little recap of our time in Santa Rosa. On Thursday we drove to Santa Rosa and started off with seeing Battier's mom Tosca II and her Breeder Caretaker Kelley. It was a great reunion and Battier had a lot of fun playing with her mom in the yard. After visiting I went back to the Canine Companions for Independence campus and met up with some friends from Washington that were coming down to turn in a puppy for another raiser and just for some CCI fun! It was pouring down rain, so that stopped our plans of going to the puppy park at CCI for some fun. I did get to see puppy #6 and it's always such a treat to see the puppies that we have raised, she definitely remembers me! After CCI we left for the Charles Schulz museum, it's a great place for photo ops with the dogs. The Schulz family were huge donors to CCI and sponsored our NW campus. After the museum we went to dinner and then back to the hotel with our friends for some fun before turn in day....

Off to college party! Pam, Shawn, Battier, Inez and Ryann 

I woke up early on Friday (5-15) and had some extra snuggles with Battier. We were at CCI around 9 am for equipment exchange, this is where we turn in the yellow puppy cape and receive the blue matriculation cape. Then it was time for a picture with Battier, we're happy that Chris Kittredge takes the pictures, they always turn out great!

After the professional photo, we went outside and took a few photos of our own. One really cool one that I am so thankful to have is a 4 generation photo of Chandra (Shawn), Akeelah, Tosca II and Battier! 

We had all the dogs play in the yard and it was great to see Battier having such a great time! After play time there was a CCI Service Dog demo and then the puppy raiser appreciation lunch. Right after lunch there was a tour of the campus. This was an awesome tour with one of the instructors. We went through the vet clinic, food prep room (they go through about 90 lbs of dog food everyday!), this is where they also have the names of each dog on a board and I could see that Battier is kenneling with another Gold Rush Chapter dog named Dawn. Next stop on the tour was to the Program office and then to one of the training rooms. It really was an excellent tour. 

After that we packed up the car and headed to the Wells Fargo Center for graduation. It was such a beautiful ceremony and the class speaker was amazing! I definitely started crying when he talked about the puppy raisers and breeder caretakers. It was very sweet. 

Battier was the 2nd puppy to go across the stage because it was in alphabetical order. She did great as expected. Then we were back in our seats for the rest of the program. After graduation we visited with Hiltie's family, she was my 2nd puppy and also one of my favorites. It's been so nice to keep in touch with her family. 

Then it was back to CCI for the dreaded turn in. We sat on the grass and visited for a few minutes and then I gave her a big hug and the tears started to come....I knew I didn't want to cry with her around so she wouldn't think something was wrong when she was going into the kennels. I pulled it together and took her to the training room. I checked her in with our Puppy Program manager and then walked over to one of the trainers and handed over her leash. I didn't cry then, but wasn't even able to say that I was ready for a trainer to take her...I just nodded my head and off Battier went without even looking back. That's exactly how we want it to be. She is a confident, smart and beautiful puppy who will do well with whatever she chooses to do! 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Last puppy class at the UC Davis Med Center

Tonight was Battier's last puppy class as a puppy in training. In the Gold Rush Chapter our last puppy class is always at the UC Davis Medical Center. It's nice for the puppies to get to visit with the kids. They were able to make a lot of kids, parents and staff smile tonight! 

We started class by finding an unused gurney with our hospital host. The dogs practiced UP and after that a JUMP on the gurney. There was a volunteer on the gurney that would pet the dogs so we could see how they would react with the kids. They all passed with flying colors. 

One of my favorite parts was when Battier went to visit a boy in the play room. He seemed to be a little nervous around the dogs at first. I asked him if he liked Batman and he said he nodded that he did. I pulled Battier's Batman mask out of the bag and put it on her. The boy started giggling and then laughing so hard, it was so cute! I then asked if he wanted to pet "Batman" and he did. These dogs make such a difference in the lives of people that they meet. 

I was able to use some of my ASL skills tonight as well. There was a Deaf family and I was able to tell them about Battier and a little about Canine Companions for Independence as well. 

It was a great class and all the dogs are definitely ready for their next step! Off to Advanced Training on Friday. 

You can watch us cross the stage on Friday! Check out the link on Friday at 1:45pm. 

Looking extra cute for the kids! 

Big Dog class: Louis, Nilda, Pippa, Napa, Battier and Nilight. 

Here's Battier in her Batman mask! There were no pictures inside of the hospital for privacy reasons. 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Last Saturday before Advanced Training & Big Dog Party!

Our last Saturday together. We've had a very busy day and it's only half over! We started by going to Sacramento Animal Hospital so Battier could say bye to her awesome vet! Sacramento Animal Hospital loves our CCI puppies and gives them their vet visits for free, we just pay for shots. Battier loves Dr. Nicholas and is always so happy to see her! 

After saying her good-byes, we went to Hobby Lobby to pick up a paw print kit. That was a fun activity! We will add Battier's paw print to the garden. 

The paw print actually looks pretty good in person, it's still drying and it'll be ready for the garden after 24 hours. 

Up next we have our Big Dog party/BBQ at a park in Fair Oaks. We're celebrating the Big Dogs that are going to Advanced Training on Friday. Battier's class includes: Louis, Nilight, Nilda, Napa, Neon, Dawn, Kailee, Pippa and Opal. 

Class of May 2015! 

UP  competition! 

Battier won the competition, longest duration with lots of distractions! 

Battier's face after she was the last dog standing! 

A toy she won! 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Big Day of Giving!

Today is the Big Day of Giving! 24 hours of giving for local charities in Sacramento! Canine Companions for Independence was one of a few charities that were chosen to have a booth at the halftime event!

We went to the Halftime celebration at Cesar Chavez Park today to promote Canine Companions for Independence! The dogs were very popular and it was fun telling people about CCI.

Our "Power Hour" for giving is between 8-9pm! If you would like to donate, click here. If we have the most donations between 8-9pm we will win $1000!

BIG DOG HOURLY DONOR BOOSTERS! (Sponsored by Sacramento Region Community Foundation)
$1,000 prize will be awarded every hour to the nonprofit that has the most number of unique donors within that hour. 

Setting up for the Halftime celebration! 

Hanging out with the Golden 1 dog! 

Wells Fargo! 

Dinger from the River Cats! 

Hanging out at the booth! 

Mayor Kevin Johnson came by to say hi to all the dogs! 

Hanging out with Slamson from the Kings! 


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Donate $5 to my Dog Fest page for a chance to win!

Who wants to win these great dog items?!? Donate $5 to my Dog Fest #Sacramento team to be entered! Each $5 = 1 entry! Example: If you donate $20 you will get 4 entries! Includes: West Paw Bumi, Chuckit Bumper, 2 Chuckit Whistle balls (medium, they fit in a regular Chuckit), Kong Wubba Tugga and 1 lbs bag of Zukes Mini Naturals (Chicken). This is a $62 value!! All money raised goes directly to Canine Companions for Independence so they can provide highly trained assistance dogs for FREE! We will be picking/announcing the winner on June 1st!! Please share! We will deliver to friends in the Sacramento area or ship to anyone in the USA!! Make sure to let me know if you've donated! Thanks!! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Uncle Trapper

Today we had a play day with Battier's Uncle Trapper, he's Mom Tosca's brother. Trapper is a Golden Retriever and was raised in our chapter. He looks JUST like his Mom Akeelah from Shawn's 3rd litter. Akeelah was raised by friends in Sacramento and I saw her often when she was growing up. Trapper is a Hearing Dog and lives in the Sacramento area as well.

Battier with Uncle Trapper and Great-Grandma Shawn. 

Someone has a cookie :) 

Trapper (Kaelen x Akeelah) 

Mirror image. 

Trapper giving his Grandma a kiss. 

Sweet dogs!