The Irvine Pet Adoption is back for it’s 7th year! As far as we know Irvine Animal Shelter has two of these large Pet Adoption Fairs every year. The summertime event is dubbed the Super Pet Adoption. We actually recall going to one of the first ones with our (at the time) puppy in training, Stetson. Guide Dogs of America even ran a booth back then as I remember meeting up with Sheila and her (at the time) puppy in training Eagan, a Black and Tan Labrador Retriever.
Unfortunately, many years past and GDA did not have a booth at the Irvine Animal Shelter Pet Adoption Fairs, but guess what? You will get a chance again to see Guide Dogs of America and their puppies in training at the 7th Annual Home for the Holidays. I plan on visiting the festivities as well, but I’m not sure yet if Adelle is going to join me…we’ll see…
Puppy for Adoption at last years Pet Adoption
7th Annual Home For The Holidays Pet Adoption Fair
So what is the Home for the Holidays Pet Adoption Fair all about? I think it’s probably one of the largest pet adoptions in Orange County with many southern Califonria rescues and shelters participating. The only one that I know of that rivals it is the America’s Family Pet Expo at the Orange County Fairgrounds in Costa Mesa, CA.
Here are some of the details on this years event:
WHAT: 7th Annual Pet Adoption Fair Home For The Holidays WHEN: December 8th, 2013, 10am – 3pm WHERE: Irvine Animal Care Center
6443 Oak Canyon Road,
Irvine, CA 92618
Home for the Holidays was created by the Irvine Animal Care Center seven years ago to bring together rescues and shelters with one shared goal – to find homes for hundreds of homeless animals. Unlike similar pet adoption events, Home for the Holidays takes place in one afternoon at one easy-to-navigate, enclosed location. The Center makes it easy for you to find your new best friend. Last year, more than 250 lives were saved.
This year’s event will take place Sunday, December 8 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Event highlights include: 500+ adoptable dogs, cats, rabbits and other animals, dozens of pet product vendors, 50+ silent auction items, low-cost microchips and free vet and trainer advice.
More than 500 animals for adoption
Dozens of Pet Product Vendors
This is a great event even if you’re not looking to adopt, but you’re just an animal lover. It gives everyone a chance to get a few pets and cuddles in as well as make a few donations to your favorite rescues, shelters, and charities. There are also a number of product vendors just in case you were looking for something special for your puppy at home.
…and don’t forget to visit our Guide Dogs of America booth and say hello to our puppies and puppy raisers.
So are you looking to adopt your next puppy or pet? If so, then I highly recommend visiting this years Home For The Holidays Pet Adoption Fair. We’ll be there working on our amateur photography chops.
Do you guys remember the last time we visited the Pet Days event in Orange County? It doesn’t seem like it was that long ago, but I just took a look back at the archives and we went to the First Pet Days way back in 2008! I bet a lot has changed since then and hopefully it has expanded well beyond the small section it occupied 5 years ago.
Anyhow, we’re going back to the Fall Pet Days and we’ll be there representing Guide Dogs of America! I’m scheduled to be there this Sunday, November 3rd from 9am-12pm. Unfortunately, Adelle will not be joining me (she’s a Canine Support Teams pup). However, I will be working with GDA puppy in training, Duncan.
Here’s Duncan as a puppy (he’s the little guy).
Little Duncan, Big Swagger!
Duncan’s no longer a little guy…he’s probably closer to the size of Swagger (the big guy in the pic).
OC Pet Days
Okay so let’s get to the details about these OC Pet Days…
WHAT: 4th Annual Fall Pet Days WHEN: November 2nd and 3rd, 2013: 9am-3pm WHERE: Orange County Fairgrounds
Orange County Market Place
88 Fair Drive – Orange County Fairgrounds,
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Pet Days Features:
Pet Wellness Information
Spay and Neuter Information
Animal Welfare Education
Non-Profit Pet Organizations
Specialty Rescue Groups
Guest Speakers and Demonstrations
Free Face Paintings
You’ll never find a better friend
Our annual Fall Pet Days are held in conjunction with the weekend swap meet at the OC Fair and Event Center.
Sorry birds or personal pets are not permitted at the OC Marketplace or Fairgrounds.
Here’s the flyer for the 4th Annual Fall Pet Days:
It’s only a few days away so don’t forget to mark your calendars. If you do decide to go don’t forget to stop by our GDA booth and say hello. Duncan and I will be there Sunday from 9am-12pm.
Over the last 7 years I’ve been raising guide dog puppies for Guide Dogs of America (GDA) and recently I’ve been thinking about raising and training for another organization. Don’t get me wrong I love being a puppy raiser for GDA, but I’m very interested in learning new things while continuing to help one of the many great assistance dog organizations out there.
Over the past few months I’ve been attending outings and training classes with Tender Loving Canine Assistance Dogs (TLCAD). They are a wonderful organization located about an hour south of me in San Diego.
Tender Loving Canine Assistance Dogs (TLCAD)
TLCAD Labrador Retriever In Training
We transform lives with service dogs.
In order to achieve this mission, Tender Loving Canines Assistance Dogs, Inc. (TLCAD):
Understands the benefits of placing dogs whose natural disposition and unique talents match a client’s personality and individual needs.
Knows that in order to ensure long term success for both dog and client, the training begins as early as possible and endures throughout the working life of the dog.
The results of this mission can be witnessed in:
Individuals with a special need, a challenge or a disability actively participating in and contributing to the world around them.
Setting the standard for a professional, dependable and happy working dog.
Increasing awareness and public education of disabilities and Assistance Dogs.
Me And TLCAD
As I mentioned I had the opportunity to participate in many TLCAD activities including several outings as well as attending their dog sitter workshop and their 8 week trainer course. I must say they have wonderful people working at this organization!
TLCAD Labradoodle In Training
However, there was really one main point that was keeping me from working as a volunteer trainer for TLCAD…
They are located in San Diego which is actually slightly closer then Sylmar, CA (GDA Main Campus), but the big difference is there are no other trainers near me (I live in Orange County about 1 hour north of San Diego). GDA has a dedicated Orange County group which consists of 50+ puppy raisers. I’ve found it very important to have this support group not only for bouncing questions off veteran raisers, but because it gives you options for puppy sitters.
The Importance Of Puppy Sitters
As a guide dog puppy raiser I’ve learned that it’s invaluable to have a puppy sitter nearby. It seems to come up quite often that spur of the moment I need a puppy sitter for just a few hours or a day. A perfect example is a wedding. I have several to go to this summer. Weddings only last a few hours and it’s an event I normally won’t take a puppy in training to unless I know the couple very well. I would only need a puppy sitter for a few hours and having one within 5-10 minutes of me is oh so convenient.
I know it’s a luxury having puppy sitters nearby, but it’s something I have considered before deciding to raise and train a puppy for a different organization. While you may not have this same option when choosing to volunteer as a puppy trainer/raiser it’s definitely something to consider if you have the option.
Even if you’re just planning on getting a puppy or dog as a family pet make sure you think about what you will do with your dog or puppy when you are away. Where will you take your puppy when going on vacation? Do you have a support group of pet friendly friends who are willing to puppy sit?
Thank You TLCAD For What You Do!
Tender Loving Canine Assistance Dogs (TLCAD) is a wonderful organization! I hope that I will get the chance to work with one of their puppies sometime in the future. If you are interested in volunteering with TLCAD then visit their website for more information.
Whether it’s a Guide Dog organization, Service Dog organization, Animal Shelter, or any other non-profit what kind of things did you consider before volunteering with your organization? Tell us about it in the comment section below.
It feels like it’s been months since I wrote a blog post…wait a second it has been almost two months since I wrote my last post about the Shelter Me DVD at Redbox. Linda wrote the last published post on her Guide Dog Story.
I must say stuff happens that sometimes gets in the way of blogging. I wish I could write a riveting blog post every day, but sadly that is almost never the case.
Beginning today I have a series of posts to update you on some of the happenings around the Puppy In Training household starting with…
Orange County Guide Dogs of America (OCGDA)
This project has been nearly a year in the making. If you go to the Wayback Machine you’ll see that our Orange County Guide Dogs of America group site, OCGDA.com was live from 2007 – 2012, but unfortunately some technical glitches brought it down and over the past few weeks/months I re-acquired the domain name and re-launched the site. Take a look at the all new OCGDA.com website:
New and Improved OCGDA Website!
What Is The OCGDA.com Website?
Yep, I knew that would be your second question…
The OCGDA.com website is for and about our Orange County Guide Dogs of America Puppies and Puppy Raisers. The site is still a work in progress and my goal is to provide as much information as possible to our group members as well as information for people interested in raising a puppy for Guide Dogs of America. A few things you will find on OCGDA.com:
Puppy Profiles (work in progress) – Working on getting pictures and profiles of all our puppies.
Calendar of Events - Shows our upcoming group outings.
Latest News – I hope to put together a post with lots of pics for each of our outings.
Forms – An easy place to find important puppy raiser forms.
General Information – Lots of general information that will hopefully help past, present, and future puppy raisers.
This is one of the projects I’ve been working on over the past few months and I’m hoping it’s helpful to our Puppy Raiser group. I’m hoping to have it all setup and ready to go before our next group meeting in mid-July.
By the way, on top of OCGDA.com I’ve been working on 5 other small websites (non-puppy related) outside of my regular 40 hour a week work load…no wonder why I’m not having the time to blog…ugghhh…
If you have a moment please take a look at OCGDA.comand let me know what you think. As I mentioned it’s still a work in progress and I’ll be making tons of updates in the coming weeks.
I went over to the mail box today and pulled out a little postcard with information on the Guide Dogs of America Open House 2012. I’ve been raising guide dogs for Guide Dogs of America (GDA) since 2006 and every year I do my best to attend the GDA Open House in June as well as bring my puppy in training to compete in the puppy trials.
This year will be no different as I plan to bring Apache, my Golden Retriever puppy in training to this years GDA Open House.
If you haven’t been to the GDA Open House then I highly recommend you go and if you’ve been in the past then I’m sure you’re eager to check out all of those cute guide dog puppies in training and bid on some of the awesome items at the silent auction.
I put together a video of Dublin and I at last years open house. Check it out:
Here’s information on this years GDA Open House.
Guide Dogs of America Open House 2012
This years theme is “Saddle up for a Western Day at GDA”
WHAT: Guide Dogs of America (GDA) Open House 2012 WHEN: Saturday, June 9th, 2012 from 10:45am – 4:00pm WHERE: Guide Dogs of America
13445 Glenoaks Blvd., Sylmar, CA 91342
Here’s a schedule of events at this years open house:
Gates open between 10:45AM and 4:00PM
Main events wind down by 3:00PM
Puppy Trials 11:30AM – 2:00PM
Guide Dog Demonstrations – 1:00PM
Silent Auction Closes at 2:30PM
Tours every 30 minutes
Raffles, Food, Merchandise
All proceeds go to GDA
Sorry, only working service dogs and puppies-in-training may attend. Please leave your career-changed dogs and pets at home.
That pretty much sums up the postcard. Some of my favorite things are:
There are always tons of cool things at the silent auction. Cool stuff for dogs, cats, and pet lovers as well as many different items and baskets for all kinds of people.
The Puppy Kissing Booth. Get your puppy breath fix for a dollar!
The crazy obstacles at the puppy trials. There are usually Llamas and chicken and even hot dogs on sticks to distract your puppy.
The guide dog demonstration. It’s pretty cool to see working dogs in action. You even have a shot at participating in the demo.
The Guide Dogs of America Open House is held every June in Sylmar, California. This year Dublin, my guide dog puppy in training and I attended the event.
There’s a ton of stuff going on at the GDA open house. Puppies in training have the opportunity to participate in the puppy trials (we arrived too late and I didn’t get a chance to take Dublin through the trials this year).
There’s also a silent auction with tons of goodies for dogs, cats, other pets, and tons of cool stuff for us humans as well. There’s several booths with…you guessed it tons of doggy stuff for sale.
Dublin Lovin’ it!
Guide Dogs of America also does a guide dog training demo. There are tours of the campus and also tons of other goodies are given away in the GDA raffle.
I’m sure I’m missing other cool things that happen on this awesome day.
We were able to put together our most recent puppy training video starring Dublin in Episode 15 – Guide Dogs of America Open House. Check it out:
We recently made our way back to Sylmar for the Guide Dogs of America Open House. That’s Dublin standing at the gates of GDA and I’m Colby welcome to episode 15 of Puppy In Training TV
Guide Dog Puppy Training Starring DUBLIN
With Linus Aussie Shepherd Rescue
Also Colby The Human
And Stetson Career Changed Guide Dog
We’re back at GDA campus and that’s Dublin hopping up on stage. We’ll see him there again later. Do you remember the last time Dublin and I posed out in front of the Guide Dogs of America sign? If you guessed back during episode 1 puppy pickup day then you’d be correct.
When we arrived at GDA we walked down that very same hill from episode 1 towards the Silent Auction As we mosied on down we saw this pup working on his “Get Busy” command You might also notice his handler petting him while he potty’s. Puppy raisers pet their pups when they potty. Why you might ask? Because when they become formal guides this helps their vision impaired handler determine if their pup is going #1 or #2.
Ahhh…the GDA Silent Auction. There’s always great stuff here. Tons of stuff for dogs, but that’s not all their are usually gift baskets for just about anybody from Laker fans, to cat lovers, to wine tastings, to restaurant and golf outings, and of course you can find something for your puppy…including a little bit of attention from a fellow puppy raiser
This years theme was june in bloom and some of the pups got quite festive
Open house is a great time to see future guide pups in training!
Every year at open house Guide Dogs of America sets up a beautiful stage to match the years theme…perfect photo op. Here’s a short clip of Dublin posing with his two siblings Daisy and Denali. Can you tell which one is Dublin?
Our puppies are given a chance to show off their obedience skills and tolerance to distractions at the puppy trials. Unfortunately we showed up late and missed the puppy trials, but still got to see that llama dublin was just staring at, a horse. We even got dublin up close and personal with a few chickens.
While we were hanging out by the chickens Dublin was a good boy and remained in a down-stay while he received a few pets
This little guy was all tuckered out after a long day at GDA open house.
As we were walking out Dublin told me he could work as a guide just like the other pups working in the lobby so I told him to show me a sit stay…pretty good Dublin, but I think you have to be a little more still to take one of their jobs.
After a long day at the Guide Dogs of America open house Dublin relaxed for the car ride home. thanks for joining us and we’ll see you next time!
Our Final Thoughts On Guide Dogs of America Open House
We love attending the Guide Dogs of America Open House every year. Although we did not get an opportunity to go through the puppy trials we did see all the items at the silent auction (unfortunately, no bidding for us this year). We also got to work on Dublin’s guide dog puppy training by seeing unusual distractions like the llama’s, horses, and chickens. We also got to work on his meet and greets which in general is an area we need to work on. However, today he was absolutely awesome with his meet and greets. Dublin surprises me again!
Dublin was much improved from his day at the Universal City Walk. I’m hoping his behavior on the train, tram, and bus during our visit to the city walk was an anomaly.
I’m glad you were able to join our puppy in training tv blog post. If you have any questions or suggestions for an episode please leave us a comment in the comment section below. Oh yeah…after you watched the video do you know which puppy was Dublin on the stage?
Do you have an adorable puppy who’s driving you nuts? Not long ago we brought home our first guide dog puppy and after the initial excitement wore off we soon realized we were in for an extreme test of our patience.
My name is Colby and I’ve been raising and training guide dog puppies for the past 5 years. Follow me and my pups on our journey from puppy to working guide dog.