Guide Dog Pup, Frankie
Guide Dog pup Frankie came to Tasmania with his sister, Bailey, in April 2018. All the way from New Zealand, he has now settled in with his loving Puppy Raising family in Hobart, where he will stay for the next 16 or so months. Frankie’s Guide Dog training has been covered through a Syndicate Sponsorship, made up of some generous people who together, have contributed to his training costs.
What a fun and busy time I have had lately. I have been boarding while my Puppy Raisers have been taking a holiday interstate. What a great opportunity this has been for me, as I have experienced so many new things while in a different home.
I go to ‘class’ with my Boarder and learn to sit very still up the front of the room while he teaches all the humans. I am a very good learner myself and have become very well behaved during ‘class’.
I went to Dogs’ Day Out at the Domain in October and what a tremendous time I had there with all the other dogs around to play with. So many different dog breeds for me to meet, it was just wonderful!
People say I have matured, and I am now very well behaved when out and about in my orange puppy coat. I do admit I was a cheeky puppy at times, but now I can walk through the city and go in to shops, ride the escalator and wait at a café, taking it all in my stride. People are very impressed at how much I have changed.
Hi my name is Frankie and since the last Puppy Love I have been very busy and have grown heaps. Even I can’t believe how much I’ve grown!
I am now eight months old and still have lots of learning to do (and more growing, would you believe it??!). I have become confident on travellators, lifts, and even the bright lights at Myer don’t bother me anymore.
Unfortunately in May, the shops at Channel Court in Kingston were flooded and our favourite Coffee Shop, Penny’s, closed. We have seen a couple of the girls that work there and I am looking forward to it reopening. Even though it’s my Puppy Raisers who get to enjoy the coffee, I still enjoy my regular visits where I get to show the girls there how well behaved I am!
I am walking quite well in my orange training coat and LOVE going to the beach at Kingston for free runs and playing with other dogs. I have not ventured into the water for a swim yet, as it’s a bit cold for that! But I’m told that the weather here warms up, eventually, so I’m hoping I’ll get to try out the mysterious thing that is the “ocean” soon enough.
You will be pleased to hear that when my Puppy Raisers blow the whistle, I am happy to come back to them. Perhaps it has something (or everything) to do with the yummy reward I get for doing this. They are very happy when I come back to them as this is an important trait for a potential Guide Dog.
During the last few months, I had a three week placement with a Boarding family. I progressed really well and my Puppy Raisers sincerely thank the Boarders for their work with me. Surely I can’t have been that hard?
What IS that big, blue wet thing they call the “ocean”?
Let me tell you something about myself. The first thing that I have discovered since I arrived in April is that I am now living on another Island just like where I was born on the North Island of New Zealand, only this island, Tasmania, is a bit further south. Hopefully it does not get too cold here in the winter, although I am lucky and will keep nice and warm because I am a Golden Retriever cross Labrador, so I will have some nice fluffy hair when it grows a bit.
Over the past weeks since I arrived I have been very busy with social engagements, including public relations for International Guide Dog Day. There were lots of media people that day with television cameras, photographers and reporters. My sister Bailey and I really stole the limelight, although Guide Dog Pepper was there and she concentrated on the very important theme that Guide Dogs are welcome everywhere. The hospitality industry is making sure that all the restaurant owners and staff know that all Guide Dogs, and even us young training pups, are welcome into restaurants.
Another outing, as you can see from the beautiful pictures of Bailey and I in this Puppy Love, was our photo shoot with Kirsty Pilkington at Willie Smith Apple Shed in the Huon Valley. Wow, that was a big day! I have also been to visit my sponsors; I am very lucky that some wonderful people have sponsored me and understand that it is going to cost lots of money for me to become a Guide Dog.
My Puppy Raisers have taken me to Eastlands and Channel Court shopping centres. At the coffee shop in Channel Court I was told that this was Guide Dog Phoebes’ favourite café. She grew up in the house that I have moved into with her Puppy Raisers and they tell me I have “big shoes to fill”. I am not sure about that; I don’t think I will need shoes, my paws look good to me.
I have also been out learning lots, as it’s important that I try lots of things while I am young and I get used to them. I have been on the travelator, in a lift, and my Puppy Raisers keep bringing me around to the left side of them to walk. Sometime I wander all over the place as I like to get a good look about. My Puppy Raisers and I sit outside of a morning and we watch the traffic go by. There are trucks, buses and cars but they don’t worry me and my Puppy Raisers say “It’s a great socialisation area for a young Guide Dog pup like me”.
Of course I am still a young pup so I have been a bit cheeky with lots of barking, just to make sure everyone knows that I am around. I also bark when my Puppy Raisers walk away from me and don’t take me with them, as I love to be close to them. I have had lots of fun with my sister Bailey, even at the media event and photo shoot we had lots of toys to play with, but we like to wrestle, chase and jump all over each other. Oh and of course, we love to cuddle and sleep next to each other. Speaking of sleep, I can feel a nap coming on now… See you next time.