Monday, January 28, 2013

The Puppy Pilgrimage

Friday started off super early for me around 4:30AM. With all the impending puppy excitement I just couldn't stay asleep. I finally made it to Michigan around 11:50PM to freezing cold 18 degree weather. I was starving as my connection in Denver allowed no time to grab any dinner. Of course all the places had just closed because it was so late. I had to wait to hit up the hotel vending machines once I got into my room. The room was okay except they turn the heat off until the new occupants arrive. Which meant it was ice cold & the heater was very slow warming it up! I ended up sleeping in my warm yoga pants, hoodie, &  winter jacket with the hood over my head. I kid you not I was shivering until about 4:30AM when my stomach woke me up growling. Thankfully the hotel offered a continental breakfast that had already started. I ran and ate, & ate, then ate some more. Then I came back to doze off & on in my room. It was hard to really fall asleep knowing I would hopefully see Balto soon.

Unfortunately Jen the lovely breeder & lady who made the donation of Balto got called into work. She ended up being delayed much to both of our dismay. I on  the other hand ended up ordering a pizza because I could see no place to walk to close to eat & once again my stomach beckoned for food. It was an amazing kid-free whatever toppings I wanted kind of pizza. You  mom's out there know what I mean. Once kids arrive and are old enough to eat pizza forget about you ever getting to pick the toppings again. Anyway it tasted great & by the time I finished Jen was on her way to pick me up! It was almost puppy time!!

When I first saw him it was love at first sight I tell you. He was sitting next his brother Riot and was so calm compared to Riot. I got to go with Icon his dad to the park. It was amazing seeing his dad in person & realizing how big Balto would one day become. As well as how smart these dogs truly can be with training.

They played outside in the freezing cold for a while then headed back in doors to warm up. Not sure if the dogs were cold but I sure was by then. Jen took me to a great Mongolian Bar-b-que place to eat & I had a lot of fun. I had fun learning to dump all kinds of different meat & veggie combinations into my bowl. Then watching the guys cook it on this huge grill. It may be my new favorite thing to eat. I'll have to locate a place around our home.
I loved getting to learn about all of Jen's dogs and Balto's parents. Disco is what they call his mom who is a real laid back happy kind of girl Jen thinks Balto get's Icon (dad) looks but Disco (mom) personality. Which will make him a great Service Dog one day. Compared to his brother Riot I could see the difference. I went back to the house and got to see videos of the dogs in action as well as all their awards. It was amazing to think that if Balto wants we could train him to do all kinds of agility & obedience shows. One day we may let Jeremy do some of these things after all the Service dog training is complete.

This is a short video of Icon doing his work. He is amazing!

After watching & looking through everything. Trying to learn anything & everything I might need to know it was time for me to take Balto back to the hotel. He was not to sure in the car ride that I was the one he was suppose to leave with and was worried. But once we made it to the hotel he got over his stranger danger as Jen & I laughingly called his attitude.

I decided to try on his new vest and walk with him some on a leash. We needed to practice for the airport the next day.
He wasn't to sure about either but got the hang of it pretty fast. The next morning arrived super early at 2:45Am to get ready. We headed out around 3:30 to the airport. He did great on the shuttle bus ride over and even better inside the airport.

Looking this cute he charmed everyone we met. Random people would stop and ask us for a picture. No telling were his photo was posted yesterday. We flew on Frontier who was amazing! They never once asked for his paper work since he wore his vest.  They simply ask I keep him under control at all times & dressed in his vest. They upgraded our seating to stretch and we sat next to a wonderful man from Canada. His son has a GSD so he kept loving on Balto who was soon laying on him to sleep. He slept for both plane rides & did amazing! We got all kinds of compliments on how well behaved his was for a 10 week old puppy.

Paul met me at the airport and off we headed to the new beginning for Jeremy & a new life of service for Balto. The boys were bouncing off the walls texting every few minutes for updates of how far away we were from home.Once we arrived they ran out to greet us all. I let Paul bring Balto up so I could try to snap pictures. Well of course he was running around like a crazy puppy so they weren't the perfect pictures I had hoped for but still some great shots.

The rest of our night was spent trying to potty train with some failure/success. Then we put everyone to bed because this mom was beyond exhausted! It was an amazing day we will never forget. We are so blessed by the donation from vom haus Huro (Jen) that she will always be in our lives. We can't thank 1 Boy 4 Change enough for their role in making sure Jeremy received the best puppy possible at no cost to our family but a plane ticket. Our new Journey has begun & we are all still smiling from all the puppy kisses. If you want to follow along please do so on our Facebook page at Jeremy's Journey to watch Balto go from cute cuddly puppy to a handsome smart service dog. Our miracle has happened & we are so thankful that God brought all these amazing people into our world. We can't wait to see what he has in store next for our family.

1 comment:

Jen said...

Absolutely adorable!!!!!! :)