"Sometimes when you sacrifice something precious, you're not really losing it. You're just passing it along to someone else." Mitch Albom

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Big Question

       Since I haven't done anything super exciting to write about with Churry, I thought I would use this post to explain the process of puppy raising to those who are interested.  I've had LOTS of questions lately about when Churry is going to turn in for formal training.  The answer is I don't know.  KSDS places their puppies with their raisers when they are about 8 weeks old.  I got Churry on August 5, 2011.

Then, after many months of training (yes, we have a manual), social exposures, messes, celebrations, etc. we get the DREADED LETTER.  I've never received one yet, but apparently it says something about us taking our puppies back to KSDS where they will go through health assessments, behavior assessments, and extensive training to become what they were meant to be.  

When I thought about becoming a puppy raiser, I had the best of intentions.  I strongly believe in giving of my time, talent and treasure to those causes I care about and believe in.  KSDS fits the bill for that.  They are an organization that provides these wonderful dogs to deserving people.  Where else can you see such a direct impact of your charitable acts and contributions.  So, I was going to do this.  Of course, it would be sad to give the puppy back.  But, I was going to be able to keep it separate.  You know, this wasn't my dog.  I have a dog.  I knew that from the beginning.  And at first, it was going okay.  Churry was a holy terror!  She wouldn't potty train, she barked and cried all night long, her teeth left scars on my hands (not in a mean way, but in a playing too hard way), she HATED snuggling...I don't mean to make it sound like I didn't like her because I truly did like her.  And I was determined to make her into a civilized member of our family.  And she was a LOT of fun!  Very playful!  But, I was still able to keep her separate.  She wasn't mine.

When we started this journey, there were 9 litters out ahead of her.  KSDS typically, from what I understand, calls their litters back in order and they only have so much room in the kennels.  No worries, I've got months, maybe even years (a couple anyway).  But suddenly here we are in February 2013.  With only 2 litters out ahead of us.   And one of her sisters gets called back.  And another dog just a couple of months ahead of her got their recall letter.  And a dog from another organization who is her age that I communicate with is going back next week.  These are "our puppies" that are getting called back.   Where did my time go?

And in the meantime, that little holy terror I described has wiggled her little way right into a deep part of my heart.  She snuggles with me every day.  She knows me.  She has licked my tears off my cheeks.   She is excited to see ME!  She actually knows commands that I thought I'd never be able to teach a dog!  But more important than all of those things, I know that she has a purpose in life bigger than being my pet.   And that shouldn't make me sad...because she was born for that, right?

But, it does make me sad.  It's very sad and I think about it on a daily basis.  I hope I have many more months with her.  I hope that those 2 litters are full of dogs that do not get released and take a LONG TIME to get trained so there is not room for my girl.  In answer to all the questions about when she goes back,  I don't know.  In answer to the question everyone has for me about how I'm going to give her back...  I don't know!  But, I do know that even if she gets released I'll do it again.  And I hope that someday, I may be lucky enough to meet the person she was truly meant for.  And realize why we really do this.  In the meantime, I'll enjoy every adventure I have left with her.  I think I could realistically expect that to be through the summer?  I hope?  


  1. Great post!!! Just like life - we often just don't know right!? You've done amazing with Churry. And you'll do amazing with your next one and the next! Keep up the good work and enjoy your girl!

  2. I got chills when I read this post - how much we both change as we go through the process - right?! You are an excellent PR and Churry is an amazing girl. Enjoy every day with your sweet pup and I'll be rooting you both on to the next happy chapter.