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October 2013 Featured Pet - Seabrook

Seabrook

"4-1/2 year old yellow lab that was 'career-changed' from Guide Dogs for the Blind here in Boring, Oregon"

Seabrook.JPGHe was puppy-raised by a family with the intent of his being a guide dog for the blind. After 3-4 weeks of training in Boring, it was discovered that he had a rash - probably from a food or environmental allergy. 50% of guide dog puppies are career changed due to health or behavioral issues, so he along with about 80 dogs per year, was available for a new home as a pet. We were selected to adopt him since we're home just about all the time, and had a previous dog who was a certified Delta/Pet Partners therapy dog. We knew something about dog training and being ambassadors for dogs out in the community. Career changed dogs need people around them almost constantly since they were trained to assist a blind person, and also like being useful and having a job todo. Some dogs with strong prey drives (they love to chase cats and romp with dogs) become search-and-rescue animals. Some with excess energy make good drug-sniffing dogs. Some without much of a work ethic or just a mellow temperament become pets, and can be certified to visit people in hospitals, nursing homes, or hospice care. Our last dog visited young men in a juvenile delinquent facility, and was a favorite with them. toothbrushing_eight.jpgSeabrook doesn't like to swim although we gave him three lessons with a certified swim coach. We'll continue to work with him so he's drown-proofed if we're hiking and he falls into a lake or river. We tried teaching him to stay still for toothbrushing, but he's more interested in sucking the toothpaste off the brush and putting dents in it. So even the most perfect of pets can stand some room for improvement! Seabrook knows about 25 commands, loves to play and snuggle, and is a bright and good-natured dog. He's the focus of our household and thinks he has us pretty well trained, as we let him sleep on the furniture, have snacks every few hours, and give him two walks and two training sessions a day. We're committed to giving him the best life we can, and make time in our day for him - he's a priority that gives back 150%.

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