golden pup in the grassHello puppy raisers!

Time for the reminder that some puppies get their heart worm medication on the 1st and 15th of the month. Don’t forget to send in your monthly reports! Carol Ann is working on catch up with monthly reports but that doesn’t mean not to send yours in! Be sure to email or call her directly if there is a questions you need addressed.

You will see some a couple clarifications with the monthly reports for “5 – 11 month old” puppies and the “1 year to in-for-training”.

Be sure to check the weight (and expiration date) when giving your puppy their heartworm medication. If your puppy’s weight is more than their marked baggie for their age, (example: If they are 4 months of age and the tablet says up to 25 lbs., it’s OK to give the next size up. Just exchange the lower weight size for another when you are at GDA.

If you are in need of a sitter, please let us know. We will check emails but it might not be as timely as we would like to respond.

If you are available to puppy sit during the coming months please let us know. We are still looking for sitters.

Puppies that are the only dog in the household need to experience some time with other dogs. In addition to needing puppy sitters we also need to schedule playdates or quick sits to help these pups out. If think your dog might be a fun playmate, or have time for this, let us know.

All meetings are working meetings for your puppy. It takes a village to raise a guide dog puppy, so please be mindful of helping other raisers succeed! Your puppy should “sit/stay” while you sign in. As you wait to sign in make sure to keep your dog a successful distance away from the dog in front of you so that all can be successful. Don’t forget the praise!

Want to visit with another raiser you haven’t seen in a while? Be sure to help your and their dogs be successful and keep the distance that will do that! Be mindful of what your dog and the other dog are doing while conversing, give them a job. Yes, that’s hard for all of us to do sometimes, but that’s why we have each other to help each be successful.

If your puppy will not be 12 weeks, they will need to stay home (and you can come to the meeting). Please send us a picture of your puppy so that we can include it in our introductions of our newest puppies!

There will be a Puppy Raiser Orientation on Saturday, October 28th at 1:00 PM. The the Oct. 21 date has been canceled and moved to Oct. 28th. Attending an orientation is a requirement for those wanting to puppy raise, whether you have raised in the past or are a new applicant. Hope to see many of you there!

KENNEL HOURS – Please remember, when boarding a dog, the kennel is open for pick-up and drop-off from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week, excluding holidays. If your dog is due to receive heartworm or flea/tick medication while visiting the kennel, you must bring it with you.

Also, please note, the entire campus (administrative offices, vet department, kennel department) will be closed for Thanksgiving on Nov. 23 and Nov. 24. If your female goes into heat during the closure, you still need to deliver her to the kennel that same day. Please call the kennel line (818-362-0358) and a member of our kennel staff will arrange for you to drop-off at GDA.

*IMPORTANT*
If you are in need of kennel accommodations over the Thanksgiving holiday and have not yet made a reservation, PLEASE CALL to confirm we have space available. If you already have a reservation, and your plans have changed, please let us know ASAP so we can free-up the kennel space for others.

TRAINING TIDBIT – We expect our dogs to pay attention to us when we’re working. It’s just as important WE pay attention to our dogs! When out with your puppy, be mindful of what s/he is doing when you stop to chat with someone or check your phone. Remember it’s often hard for puppies to “idle” patiently. Give your puppy something to do (like “sit” or “down”) and be prepared to work the behavior as needed, even while chatting and checking your phone. Every moment you are with your dog, one of you is being trained! Make sure you are the trainer and not the trainee! (And don’t forget to release your puppy with “O. K.!” when asking for a sit-stay or down-stay.)

FLEA/TICK MED DOSING – Be sure to set an appropriate reminder so you don’t forget to dose or apply Bravecto or Activyl on time. Continuous protection from fleas and ticks is important. If you haven’t yet done so, please mark your paper calendars or set a “to do list” reminder on your phone or tablet. (Go ahead and do it now… we’ll wait. *wink*) It only takes a few minutes of proactive planning to make sure future meds are given on time. (The same goes with the monthly heartworm medication you were given when you picked up your puppy.)

VACCINE/MEDICAL RECORDS – When visiting a local shot clinic (usually for rabies), you MUST forward a copy of the rabies certificate and any medical notes as soon as possible. It is imperative our vet staff have accurate, up-to-date medical information for all of our dogs. Please do not rely on the clinic staff to forward this information; get copies and forward yourself. You can scan and email the documents directly to the vet department at vetdept@guidedogsofamerica.org. If you use a smart phone, look for a document scanner app – super easy!

REPEAT RAISING – If you’re between puppies but starting to pine for the sweet smell of puppy breath, or you already know you’ll be ready for another puppy as soon as possible once your current dog goes off to college, please let your area leader know. As I’m still getting to know people, I rely heavily on “intel” from area leaders when it comes to getting a “read” on which raiser groups might be ready for puppies next. Leaders: When you think you’re close to building a cluster of 3-4 puppies in your group, please let me know.

The Sylmar group is participating in the Granada Hills Parade. If you would like to join in the fun, please see below:

Granada Hills Parade take home decorating help for float entry: Three Dog “Barkery”
Thank you to the many of you that said you’d be glad to help with some float take home items!!!
– Items to paint and decorate available for pick up at GDA tomorrow evening,Thurs. Nov. 16 between 6:00 pm and 7:30 pm or the English’s house on Sat. Nov. 18th. We’d like them back by Sat. Nov. 25th for float assembly. Several people said that they would help do take home projects. Please let us know what you can help with from the list below and we can have them ready for you. You can sign up here: parade Sign Up HERE for the parade as well as to help with the take home float work.

If you have your own paint that would help. Acrylic or left over house paint works well. Decorations glued on top are fine too.
Items needing your help include:
– 80 pupcakes (cupcakes),
– 9 loaves of bread,
– 4 Fruit cakes,
– 4 dozen cookies, (wooden -made from cut tree branch)
– 24 cake pops (colored plastic balls that can be decorated with puffy paints and put on skewer/dowel sticks)
– Lettering for the sides of the truck announcing the theme and that we are GDA.
– Stencil onto (sand bags) “Flour”, “Sugar”, “Dog Treats”, “Sprinkles”.
– Puppies walking in the parade
– GDA banner carriers in the parade

*Baked Items have been created out of expanding construction foam spray in containers, so they are shaped as the goodies but need to be painted/decorated to look. like them. We are also trying to come up with clever names for those products in case you have any ideas. Attached is a picture of our award winning 2013 Scarecrow exhibit which also had the “baked” goods and will give an idea of painting/decorating as well as a picture of the goods currently taking up residence in our house. Help!

Our Entry….
Cherry Teter will be attending the parade meeting on Thursday night to get our packet and line up number. Thank You, Cherry!!!

We have a cute entry. The pick up truck bed will have a very large mixer and big bags of flour, sugar, etc.. The trailer will be the “barkery” shop and display all the goodies which we hope will have some cute names on a menu (still trying to come up with names for them all.) One lab, one golden retriever and one shepherd puppy will ride on the float/truck (with their handlers) as the 3 main dog chefs.

All puppies walking will be wearing chef aprons which we are furnishing for the puppies.
We ask all handlers and parade walkers to wear aprons (holiday ones if you have them). We are getting Chef hats for humans.

We also will collect some canned goods to be donated to a food pantry (as suggested by a raiser as one of the ideas for the float) and thus we will have a “favorite foods collection basket” for the food pantry on our float. We invite you to bring a can or item for the this cause and as a Sylmar group we will donate them. We can also put in some dog treats in the basket too. If someone wants to make that basket into a display, your help would be much appreciated.

Granada Hills Parade is Sunday December 3rd. We need participates for our walking unit. Meet at Petit Park (Granada Hills Recreational Complex) at 12:30.
Puppies should be able to handle walking 1 1/2 miles and handle crowd noises (blowing horns, nearby bands), so 9 months would usually be appropriate. If you have younger, please check for approval first. We will need a head count of puppies so that we have enough costumes for the puppies.
We are in need of two banner carriers that will head up our unit.

After the parade we will once again go over to Presidente Restaurant to celebrate. We will need a RSVP head count by Nov. 25th to make reservations at the restaurant.

December 6th Meeting Pot Luck
As many of you know, we’ll be having a Holiday Potluck following the monthly meeting at GDA on Weds Dec 6th.

We’re helping Pam coordinate and could use some volunteers for the following:

Set-up (beginning @ 5:30p – tables, chairs)
Clean-up
Tear-down

If you’re able to assist, send me an email /text with your Name, contact # and in what capacity you can assist.

In terms of the potluck, we need volunteers to contribute entrees, sides and beverages, ice/chests.

We’ll have power strips available for any crock-pot dishes, as well as chafing trays to keep entrees warm.

Please send me an email /text with your name, contact info and what you plan to bring. (Or if you’re unsure what to bring, we can make suggestions once the sign-up is underway)

It’s been a fantastic year!
Let’s take this last opportunity to gather as a Family of Friends and celebrate GDA, our wonderful dogs and fantastic friends!

Holiday Light Walk Outing:
Tuesday, December 12th at 7:00 pm. Wakefield Winter Wonderland in Santa Clarita. Come walk through the lights, have some hot chocolate and a good picture taking time! Don’t forget a warm jacket, hat and gloves (for you) and a clean puppy jacket for your puppy too!

yellow lab with tulips

Remember monthly meetings are mandatory for puppy raisers and puppy sitters!

If you can’t make the meeting be sure to let us know and seek out another area meeting to attend for this month. Also don’t forget to let us know if you are having your puppy sat or are taking your puppy on vacation with you.

golden in the grass

Remember, if someone else is watching your puppy, that you should be informing your area leaders (us)! Also, if you cannot make it to a meeting, please notify us!
– Please give the heartworm meds to puppies on schedule.
– Check to make sure your monthly puppy report is turned in. These are VERY important.

If you are planning to travel out of state with your puppy, we (Louise, area leaders and vet department) need to know that in advance BEFORE you leave. All puppies should have a health check before leaving the state. That will need to be done within 10 days of the trip.

From the Vet Department:
It is up to the discretion of our Veterinarians when they do surgeries or which dogs may need sutures or staples. Under no circumstances is any puppy raiser to remove sutures, staples or stitches. They must be removed by our Vet staff or in special circumstances some raisers will ask to go to their Vet and pay for the visit.

– Please follow the vet department’s instructions for any medical issues. Friends and families may try to suggest ways to handle diarrhea, etc., but ONLY GDA vet dept. instructions are to be followed. Report any changes to GDA right away. Each dog individually is taken into consideration and the course of treatment is for that dog. As Yvette has stated, in cases of diarrhea, please notify both your area leaders and GDA Vet Dept. Please keep your pup home from any outings, Sat. class at GDA, and monthly meetings. BUT do notify us if you are not coming to Sat. class or a monthly meeting.

springtime black lab
– No, we Do NOT feed carrots. pumpkin, apples, sweet potatoes, etc. to our GDA pups.

– Bravecto is available in the Vet Dept. If you have a pup that would be coming in for formal training, and need flea medication, it is best to do the monthly Activyl topical instead for the last couple months so that as the dogs come in and the staff gets them all on new schedules, they will not have to wait to get their flea control adjusted.

From the Kennel Department:
– There is a lot of room for boarding. Please make your reservations for kennel boarding.
– If you are able to help puppy sit (especially for the younger puppies), please let us know.

golden at beach