Sawyer has had a busy summer! In July, she spent three weeks with her co-raiser, Kaylie, while Jackie and her family were away. In our partnership, she gets to experience two very different worlds, including living in an apartment and a detached home, living with kids and in a busy home without kids, working at home/PADS versus working in vet clinics and being on the road a lot. Sawyer takes (almost) all of it in stride (she’s not a fan of being behind a barrier and not part of the action in either scenario – this girl feels some pretty intense FOMO, which is improving with age and training.

August has been mostly about enjoying those summer vibes. Because Sawyer was born in Australia during their winter, then arrived in Vancouver during our fall, this is her first taste of summer. This month we’ve enjoyed a trip to a remote cabin on the Sunshine Coast with lots of freedom, as well as two weeks in Whistler. Jackie forgot Sawyer’s cape at home for the Whistler trip, but we made the most of outdoor socialization opportunities – large flights of grated stairs, kids sailing camp, bouncy suspension bridges, swimming and lots of hiking. We also discovered Sawyer is not a fan of bears, and will bark at them. Being from Australia, she comes from many generations of dogs who would have never seen a bear! We followed up our bear encounter with some fun, optimism-building games, and she is back to being her normal, confident self. Being a bit cautious of bears is okay – and I certainly appreciate the early warning system – but we want to make sure that she can move away, and return to a productive working state so she doesn’t put herself or a client in danger.

This month also marked Sawyer’s formal adult assessment. This is the point when PADS staff determine which dogs will be looked at further for breeding, which will continue on to advanced training, and for a few, which dogs will be happier in a different lifestyle. All of the pups in Sawyer’s class haven’t been assessed yet, so there’s no news about Sawyer’s future yet, but maybe next month!

Submitted by: Jackie