We found a heart warming story in the Daily Telegraph about the Sutcliffe family raising a Labrador puppy that will possibly become a guide dog in the future. This gorgeous 3 month old yellow Labrador, Nancy, is reported to be energetic and cheeky.
The Sutcliffe’s, George, Lynette, Monique and Taylor, are one of 200 foster families raising Labrador pups. The pups stay with the foster families until they are 14 months old and ready to begin guide dog training. The family volunteered to raise Nancy from nine weeks of age. Within a month she was walking, obeying commands and doing well with her toilet training. The role of a puppy raiser is toilet training, daily walks on a lead in social environments teaching basic obedience skills.
It is really admirable, but the parting is no doubt very heartbreaking. We get so attached to our Labs; they become fully-fledged family members. Would you have it in your heart to let them go at 14 months? “Hats off” to the brave families who provide this service.
Here are the story highlights:
“DESPITE the 4am barking, sleepless nights from toilet training and the torn clothing, the Sutcliffe family has a whole lot of puppy love.”
“I had a labrador as a child and I thought the short-term option provided by Guide Dogs was a good solution for my daughters,” Steven Sutcliffe said.
“In a way its worse than having children. Children can understand you,” Mr Sutcliffe said. His wife, Lynette, had never been a dog person, but she is now falling for Nancy’s charm.
“It’s going to be hard to give her up,” she said.
“But we know she is going to help somebody and we have brought her to a stage where she can.”
“Knowing she is going to help someone else is rewarding,” 16-year-old Taylor said.
“Being able to sit with your dog in the backyard and just think is a highlight.”
Guide Dogs are our ultimate partners. When you and your beloved dog rely on each other for nearly everything, your love is multiplied to epic proportions. – Dianne Phelps and Primrose