Today is sweet Caysun Louise’s last day with us. I’m taking the beautiful girl back to Charlottesville, VA, tomorrow. It’ll all be over by about 3p on Monday. She’ll be there, and I’ll be back here.
THIS is the hard part of raising a service puppy. The part that makes you cry. Ugly crying, not poignant, lovely tears that fall quietly. These tears come from a place way down deep. I keep them tucked away, but as turn-in day comes closer, they fight back. They won’t stay buried. Every now and then – like right now as I type – one will make a break for it and succeed in sliding down my face.
And tomorrow? Forget it. The floodgates will open. There’s nothing I can do about it. It won’t matter how hard I try, they’ll find their release. Tomorrow, the next day, the day after that, the day after that…
I put “ups and downs” in the title, so where’s the good part? That all happens at the beginning and the middle and the very end, when Caysun is paired up with her person. There’s a lot of good stuff. And when it’s good, it’s very good. But when it’s bad, man, it’s really bad.
This morning, Caysun jumped up on the bed with me and had some rough and tumble time. A wild woman, she was. Jumping, grunting, nibbling, flipping over, silly at it’s finest. I couldn’t help but feel a little melancholy in the middle of it all, knowing that was our last silly morning together. Tomorrow, I’ll be up before the sun comes up and she and I will be on the road at 6a, heading for the next big adventure for sweet Baby Caysun.
By far, tomorrow’s the worst day of every puppy raiser’s life — turn in. There’s nothing good about it. Absolutely nothing. Not one redeeming factor. It’s bad — all bad. And I’ll have a three-hour drive home without her to cry and moan and woe-is-me it up to the hilt. I hate puppy raising; hate it, hate it, hate it.
When does my next puppy arrive? Soon, I hope.
The Jolly Dog House says
Awwwww Laurie, my heart aches for you. I couldn’t do what you do; you’re a much stronger woman than me to continue taking on new pups. I know the outcome of what you do is wonderful, but I can’t imagine having that ache quite so often.
Hopefully, your new pup will be there very soon. (((hugs)))
Jo Cook says
Thinking of you all day tomorrow, nothing else I can say.
I can’t believe that much time has passed already. Thanks for talking about this so openly. I’ve really wondered about raising puppies that weren’t yours, over and over again, and turning them in. It’s probably the main reason I never entertained the notion of doing it during college, where people could raise puppies for Guiding Eyes.
I didn’t even “know” Caysun, and I’ll miss her!
Good luck saying goodbye. Some person will be very lucky to have Caysun in their life.
Mimi & Cabana says
I can’t say I know what you’re feeling, because the service dog pup we raised ended up as our pet. And while I love Cabana absolutely and am grateful for her everyday, I also feel that I missed out on the feeling of a goal accomplished and of impacting someone else’s life in a million positive, albeit unknown, ways. I know it’s not much to hold on to, though, especially during that 3-hour drive. Hugs to you.
brooke & darwin says
I think the hardest one for me to read about will always be Talos. What a guy.
Good luck to you and Caysun tomorrow!
Thinking of you so much the past few days. The heartache is palpable, and no easy way to soften the hurt. What a generous, selfless thing you do: opening your home, your skills and your heart so that someone else (over and over!) can have a much better life. And so that their new pup can live a happy, purposeful life as well. Remarkable, extraordinary you. Sending you hugs from the other coast,
Laurie Luck says
We’ve had three dogs not make it all the way through: Tango, Lily, and Nemo. We love, love, love them! I can’t imagine life without them, of course.
Laurie Luck says
Ah, sweet Talos. Yes, he has been THE hardest to date. So very heartwrenching! But so much fun to know how much good he’s doing now.
Laurie Luck says
Jeanne, thanks so much. I think stupid is a better description of me. 😉 WHY, oh why do I keep signing on for another service dog when I know how much heartache is involved? Because it’s fun, yes. And because I am one of those “bury my head in the sand” girls — yes, I know there’ll be hard times in the future, but there’s fun NOW! 😉
Pamela Taylor says
I really respect you for doing this service. I got your facebook page from Lisa Waggoner. I am really interested in the clicker training. I live in metro Atlanta and would love to find out about your classes or a similar class here. I am Pam Taylor, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. You can reach me by facebook and/or email. I am going to sign up to “follow” you. This is my first time on you site and will continue to look for what and how your training is accomplished on this web site. My husband and I have a LasaZu named Chaucer. He is three. He is great but I need to formally train him. So I am very interested in your program.