1540321_751143614913873_106988886_oHi everybody! I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday. It’s been awhile since we updated, it has been insanely busy here, and it’s not letting up yet. We had a wonderful Christmas, we have an extra visitor here for a week, (more on that later) and we have some family flying in from places much colder than here for a couple of days.

As a service dog handler, something I hear a lot is “that must be a rough life for a dog”, or “it seems like a cruel fate”, or even things like “how do you manage to not pet them, and only let your daughter interact with them?”

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Every once in awhile, a dog comes along that changes everything. For me, that dog is Major. I have had dogs all my life. As a matter of fact, I can’t remember a day since I was a child without one. There have been a lot of dogs. But there has never been a dog like Major. He had a rough start in life. Undeserved. Cruel. And unlike people, he holds no grudge. But like a lot of people, he was looking for an opportunity to prove himself. To show his stuff. To make a difference. To be loved. To be appreciated. He has flourished in our home. He continues to make me smile. To make me say “WOW!” To make me wonder how he does what he does. And he does it all for a scratch behind the ears, a treat, and a warm place in my heart.

He is our protector. Not just my daughter’s. He watches over all of us. He always needs to see both Stella and Dash when we are out. He insists that we exercise together. He keeps us safe. Yes, he has saved Stella’s life more than once. But he has saved mine too.

He is our dog. Our companion. Our friend. Our protector. Our running buddy. Our keeper of secrets. Our type 1 diabetes warrior. He is our family. Today is his 4th birthday. I can’t begin to tell you how much this dog means to me. I LOVE this dog. He has changed my life. He has rekindled my passion for photography. He has made my daughter’s health better. He has introduced us to amazing friends, people that are now family. Just a dog? Hardly…

I apologize in advance for the length of the video. But understand, it could have been HOURS with the amount of images I have of Major. I had to pull down the audio. But feel free to play Cat Stevens “I love my dog” in the background 😉

I love my dog…

Team Blackdogsrule

20131207-IMG_2011We celebrated my daughter’s 11th birthday this weekend. We had a fantastic, busy weekend, filled with lots of fun, family, and friends. Saturday started off with some snuggle time with the labs and presents in bed.

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20130812-P1020145Laurie told me an amazing story that happened today. See, both our kids go to the same school. But Stella starts at 7:45 and Dash starts at 8:30. They both finish at 3:15. So in the mornings, Laurie takes the kids and Major to school. They wait with Stella until her bell rings. Then once that happens, they head back to the car and wait for Dash’s start time.  More »

11003235465_f8f15bb56f_bRaven is our night alerter. She sleeps in our room, next to our bed, on a Kuranda cot, as seen above. We have learned from trial and error, that if Raven sleeps on a pillow type dog bed, a foam mattress type bed, or in bed with us, she sleeps too hard and doesn’t wake up at night to alert. When she sleeps on the Kuranda cot, that is not an issue. She is able to wake up and alert just fine. That has been working well for us right up until… More »

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