I’m SFC Ivy Robinson, and I am 21 months old and ready to report to Hero Dogs for my advanced training. I have lived with my puppy raiser since I was 8 weeks old and I am now ready to move on to the next phase of my training.
I have grown up to be a beautiful golden retriever and I have learned to be a loyal, smart, kind, dependable, and helpful service dog. I have learned to be attentive to my puppy raiser and to listen to commands. My vocabulary now exceeds 40 words.
Training to be a service dog required me to learn specific tasks such as coming immediately when called and to ride on the floor of the car. I am not allowed on any furniture, and not allowed to beg for food nor pick any up from the ground. I have learned to assist my puppy raiser when needed… to pick up her keys, get her shoes or socks, help unload the dryer, pick up a dime, or carry a bag from the store. I have learned the proper way to go through a doorway or an elevator, how to board the Metro, how to properly walk with the shopping cart, and how to wait patiently in a line at the post office, at a meeting, or at work.
Life with my puppy raiser has not just been work… I have been very lucky to have had a big backyard to run and play in. There was even a swimming pool where I learned how to swim. We had so much fun playing in the yard and going for walks in the woods. My puppy raiser tried very hard to teach me not to be afraid of flags fluttering on mailboxes, signs blowing in the wind, or people carrying big boxes. I’m still very much afraid of people dressed in funny costumes because… that’s just not right! Hero Dogs advanced training will help me to perfect my skills and make me ready for my perfect Veteran partner.
My puppy raiser asked me to tell you that she is very proud of me and all that I have learned. She says that she will miss my warm brown eyes and that loving head resting on her lap. She knows I will make a terrific partner for a Veteran in need of a loving and patient companion.