Summer has been a blast!
I started August with my monthly visit to the Armed Forces Retirement Home. My friend and fellow therapy dog Dolley was there this time and I was so happy to see her! We visited many Veterans! One asked for my name… Christen told him my name is Calvin and then he said “Calvin Coolidge!” Christen smiled. I am not named after the 30th President of the United States, but many Veterans think I am. Some Veterans even ask if there is a “Hobbes” at home… I have no idea what they are talking about. One Veteran we see every time doesn’t remember us from the month before so we introduce ourselves for the first time every month. I think it’s great because we have a lot of opportunities to make a good first impression. This time, though, she asked if I was a girl, and before Christen could answer she went to check with her hand! Oh my! That was a surprise! I stayed still and acted like I was getting an exam at the vet’s office. She then began to call me a she. I guess she didn’t learn dog anatomy. Christen laughed and just went with it. Sometimes silly things happen on our visits and sometimes I get petted in a funny way or I get called a she, but I don’t mind. I love my job and I love all the smiles that I spread!
The next day we went to the annual Hero Dogs Golf Tournament! We had a BALL (hehe)! I got to sit on a golf cart and I told the new Hero Dogs puppy Scruggs all about how to get more food by sitting as much as you can. I told him “just keep looking at the humans and sit… they love it and you will get a bunch more food!” He is a great little pup and I know he will do a great job in his training! We got our photos taken with the golfers and I showed them my skills! There were little white balls everywhere, but we were told not to retrieve them!?!? How confusing!
I got my Canine Good Citizen Certificate this month and submitted all my paperwork to start working at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. If everything goes as planned hopefully I will have some great news and stories to share with you next month!
Brendan’s birthday was earlier this month so I got him PJs with Labradors on them! Christen’s birthday was later this month and I got her an anchor necklace to match mine! My adoption day anniversary was this month too and I celebrated with some frozen banana peanut butter ice cream with chicken on top! I celebrated National Dog Day with more frozen banana peanut butter ice cream! Mmm-hmmm! Nothing like a cold sweet treat on a hot summer day!
The best thing ever happened this month! I went shopping in my own backyard! I found a brand new football in the grass! I ran around to celebrate the new toy I just found, then I brought it over to Christen and she asked for me to “give” so I did. She said she would have to ask around to see if anyone was missing a football in the neighborhood first before I could play with it. Turned out no one knew whose football it was! The football fairy must have brought it just for me in time for football season to start! Now I have a football and I love it because I found it!
At therapy dog class this month I learned “nudge” where I put my head under someone’s arm and move my nose up so I can put their arm on their lap or help someone pet me. I also learned to “pull” which I already know, but now I will apply it to creating resistance for physical therapy and helping patients gain strength. So I am learning how to pull nice and steady without shaking my head.
My very good Hero Dogs human friends got my fellow therapy dog Grant and I bow ties! We looked like such perfect gentlemen-dogs! Being a therapy dog means there is always an excuse to wear something silly because the people we visit really appreciate the extra humor!
To end the month, while Brendan was in the studio completing our album, I was working on “leave it.” I have been working on “leave it” since I was a little puppy, but Christen thought I needed a little more work. She got some old pizza out of the fridge and put it on the floor. She said “leave it.” I left it alone after staring at it for a little while and every time I looked up at her and didn’t touch the pizza I got a piece of kibble. Then she broke the pizza into smaller pieces and spread them around. We worked on walking around the pizza and not touching it. Sometimes I had to stare pretty hard at the pizza before I went around it. The next day she put the pizza on the ground outside and we walked past and around the pizza. She said “leave it” and I did. The hardest part was when a piece of pizza on the grass was melting in the hot sun with a bunch of ants on it, and it smelled soooo good! It took me a long time to look up at Christen and leave it alone. Eventually I was dodging pizza like it was something dangerous! I hope to continue my “leave it” training and become a pro!
I can’t wait for next month! I hear there might be some big news coming my way! I also can’t wait for the cool fall weather to start because it has been waaaay too hot on my walks lately.