Well, Cura and I are officially Alumni of A Fresh Perspective Dog Training's Service Dog program! WhoooHooo! It was a wonderful evening. We were fortunate enough to have several people come and help us to celebrate our success. So many people have come together to create our Service Dog Team and all of them were thrilled that Cura and I were graduating.
We received a framed diploma and Rick and Heather had Service Dog patches made -- I can't WAIT to switch them out on Cura's gear. The wording of the diploma is great -- with any form of the word 'certified' conspicuously absent! Yay! (where do you think I get my healthy distain for the whole 'certified Service Dog' myth?)
One of the talented Service Dog Teams in the program presented us with a beautiful painting -- I have no idea how she managed it (the idea -- not the actual painting), but the imagery was perfect and the colors she used were amazing. She is so talented and it was an honor to be gifted with one of her creations.
We received many wonderful gifts and, thanks to the generosity of many of the guests, Cura and I were able to present Paws and Stripes with a small donation to help their cause! (I posted about this great new organization a little over a month ago -- if you are interested in learning more about it, check out the website). The founders are involved in the same Service Dog program as Cura and I so it was a pleasure to be able to donate to a good cause and help a few friends at the same time.
Well, that is the quick and dirty version of graduation . . . I think it will take some time to figure out exactly how I feel about no longer being in training. I imagine it will gradually start to sink in as the weeks pass. Don't worry, I will keep sharing our journey -- after all, it is still ongoing even though we are not 'in training' any longer. Cura and I will still be going to classes -- to keep us from getting lazy -- and I will keep teaching Cura new skills -- to keep her mind working. Plus, there will be the everyday experiences of being a partnership and moving through the world.
Stay tuned for our adventures!