That phrase “Time flies when you’re having fun” definitely applied to my July! Can you believe this was my first July I’ve had since I was born?! I am a winter baby since I was born back in December, but these summer months are pretty awesome too. Of course with the summer comes hot pavement and surfaces, so my puppy raiser is extra careful with keeping my feet safe – I need them to be in good shape after all to be able to perform my job. She puts this “Mushers Secret” paw protectant on them and at first I always tried to lick it off. After some work with “leave it” and simply getting used to it, I no longer try to lick it all off me.
The first weekend of the month I went to my doggie friend Nala’s house – she’s the one who is just a month older than me and has the awesome backyard with the pool! While I am still not completely sold on the idea of swimming where I can’t stand, I am brave enough every once in a while for a lap. Otherwise I spend my time splashing and laying on the steps and sticking my face in the water. The best part was that Becca was dogsitting Nala for the weekend, so we both had tons of exercise and playtime together for a couple of days.
My puppy raiser says a tired puppy is a happy puppy – but when I’m tired, I just want to nap! I suppose that does mean I am happy since all my excited Labrador energy is out. That being said, while I am a very happy dog, I am also pretty mellow for a Lab and for a puppy! My friends at Hero Dogs probably wouldn’t believe that since I always want to lick their faces and play, but I don’t get myself into any trouble at home. Becca says it’s a blessing and a little bit of a curse. While I will never chew or take anything that doesn’t belong to me, it makes learning to pick things up to bring to my puppy raiser a little trickier than she thought. I have heard about how busy of a puppy her last Hero Dog, Ruby, was – she loved to pick everything up. Me? Well I am a little more concerned about it not being a dog toy!
I also went to the country club this month for dinner in the newly renovated restaurant/bar/patio. The staff there know HD Ruby and me by now and they love when I visit. They are so great there — they always ask Becca first if they can say hello to me and then ignore me as I “settle” at the table. Part of my job is ignoring distractions while out in public working, so it’s nice not even being tempted. 🙂
There is this new place my puppy raiser took me for my walk and exercise near home called Lake Roland. There is a lake where adults and kids were fishing and kayaking, and there is a big bridge to cross, trails, a playground, a dog park, and a wooden bridge path. Becca showed me everything there! We walked near the playground, did some “look” and “watch” by the dog park which didn’t even faze me, went over the bridge and down the wooden path – there were some great smells to check out!
For the 4th of July I got to have patriotic dog popsicles! My puppy raiser saw that HD Calvin’s humans made yummy frozen yogurt, strawberry, and blueberry treats, so Becca made some in the shape of a bone! It’s so nice to enjoy one on these hot summer days to cool off.
A couple days later I went to Hero Dogs to report for kennel duty… well, my human did. I just went with her to see some of my older service dog friends. I still do not like being left behind in the kennel while Becca tends to the older dogs, but she always tells me they are just as important as I am and need her attention too. 🙂 It’s tough being a puppy some days, I tell ya.
I also went to Sam’s club this month where everything is enormous and oversized. Apparently I did a great job with my loose leash walking and heeling with the cart. There was a giant fire truck out in the parking lot which Becca let me look at, but I usually choose not to get distracted by these things and like to watch Becca more… she does carry the treats after all. I am still working on holding my “stand stay” and “down stay” at the register and not trying to lick bits of who-knows-what off the floor, but with more practice I think I’ll eventually realize it’s more fun to focus on my puppy raiser.
In the middle of the month I went back to stay with puppy sitter Lenora who I spent a few days with last month. I spent the week with her and went on a big, fun adventure! I supervised the baking of hundreds of star cookies to take when welcoming home Bravo Company of the 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment of the Virginia National Guard. I also went to a swim meet with my puppy sitter’s grandson and spent lots of time with him, even getting in the kiddie pool together!
In July I also discovered a new found love for…SAND! I took my first trip to the snowball stand near home, which has picnic tables in the sand for the humans to eat at. I temporarily forgot my manners and was simply being a dog by digging and rolling in the sand, sticking my nose it in, and rolling around. That stuff is so much fun, but after I was told “enough” I chose to settle under the table for a bit. There were kids and adults there who said hello to me, and I was sure to give them a nice sandy lick. Hopefully we get to go back again soon!
Towards the end of the month I also took a trip down to Washington, DC with Becca, her mom, Becca’s friend, and her friend’s parents. We enjoyed a nice lunch where I settled under the table before seeing a play called “15 Villanous Fools” put on by Becca’s friend’s sister and her college friend. They are traveling this summer performing their two-woman show and it was a great experience! Twice the room went completely black and we couldn’t see a thing, but I stayed on my place and when the lights came back on I was watching my puppy raiser. The girls performing were laughing, shouting, clapping, running by me, using accents, rolling on the floor, throwing and moving props around, and had music playing. There were so many things going on that I didn’t get to nap, but I watched their performance and chewed on my bone.
The very last thing in July was a Hero Dogs pool party! Boy oh boy was this a BLAST. The best part is that Becca went and picked up HD Ruby for a few days and she came too. 🙂 There was HD Archie and his fur brother Lincoln, HD Grant, HD Robbie, HD Boomer, HD Mitch, HD Ruby, and me! We ran, played, and swam for a long time – I don’t think any of us wanted to get out of the pool. You can imagine we both slept for the rest of the day. 🙂