In this blog, I concentrate on reporting on the experience of raising a puppy to be a service dog, so normally Dionne commands the spotlight. But Tucker was the first CCI puppy we ever raised. It’s hard to believe, but on November 30, he’ll be 9. He was released for distractibility, and though we were devastated when we got the call, we also were happy to welcome his sweet and easy-going personality back as a permanent member of our household. He’s gotten along well with all our subsequent CCI pups (though he’s liked some more than others.) But it’s also interesting to observe his reaction on those occasions when he becomes an Only Dog.

That’s the situation at the moment, since Dionne is confined up in Oceanside for the duration of her heat cycle (another week or so). At first, Tucker seemed to be looking for her. He likes her a lot, and I’m sure he missed her.

But he does get extra attention when it’s just him. And recently, he’s been behaving in one way that astounds us.

Unlike some of his housemates (Pearl, Yuli, Darby), he’s always seemed downright indifferent to balls, yet he’s begun acting like he LOVES them. He brings them to me and stares imploringly. If I raise the ball to throw it, he quivers with excitement. If I make a feint to throw it, his body becomes rigid with excitement. Often he’ll bark at me. He chases balls that are thrown and brings them back, eager for more.  It’s unnerving, as if he’s been taken over by some canine body-snatcher!

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