Dogs brought into the training program can spend as much as 18 to 24 months training and working with their veteran. It’s not a case of all work, and no play. Enrichment activities like trail walks and swimming are key to the dog’s development as a service animal. Co-produced with Believet.
Cold Weather Playtime
Now that the snow has made it to Minnesota once again, play-time can see a big change with the weather. To keep the dogs safe from the cold and ice, we switch over from half a dozen longer outdoor sessions to quick outings before using our indoor gymnasium. Our staff is trained to spot signs of discomfort with the cold like nibbling the snow between their paw pads and holding paws up off the ground, so we can get the dogs back inside. For the dogs that don’t know their own limits, we have guidelines we follow based on the temperatures and wind chills. Plus we have to endure the sometimes unforgiving Minnesota weather right along with them, so if we are uncomfortable, chances are it time to seek some warmth. People often bring dog sweaters and coats but they are not necessary. We monitor the conditions and each dogs reaction to them closely so we can accommodate the differences in each dogs tolerance. Unless you want them to wear the clothing for the duration of the day, it doesn’t make sense to get them dressed and undressed a dozen times a day when they venture outside. As our name suggests we keep the fun going through all the seasons.
New Tricks, New Year
All Seasons Canine Country Club embarked on a new community project in 2015 with the birth of a litter of yellow labrador retrievers out of our resident dog, Ruby. She was bred for the sole purpose of providing psychiatric-assist service dog to Minnesota Veterans with PTSD. We will be donating three male pups born in July 2015 to an exciting new organization based out of Northfield called Believet Canine Service Partners. They are on track to move to their finishing facility in the Summer of 2016 but until then they are learning the basics of being great dogs at three local homes. This is an endeavor we have never tried before so we are learning new things right along with the pups. All Seasons hopes the rest of our time with these sweethearts is productive and successful so we can repeat the process in the future to help even more former service-members. We are proud to introduce theses delightful boys.
Buzz is the first born of the boys and hands-down the most energetic. His biggest joys include play-dates with his brothers and playing a nice game of fetch. He likes working on many commands at once to keep training exciting, so he knows a lot but needs much perfecting. He enjoys all toys that squeak and has a knack for stretching out in positions that take up as much room as possible. His favorite part of each day is when he gets some off-leash playtime outdoors to follow where his nose takes him.
Loyal is the middle brother and is identifiable by his lighter coloring. He is the pup that gets around town the most these days and has the perfect social personality. (Follow his Facebook page.) When Loyal is not working hard out in public he enjoys playing chase with his foster-pack – Willow and Recon, also yellow labs. He tries his best to be a lap-dog but he is growing too big, and is starting to get his cuddles in other ways. Loyal is the only one of the three trained to ring a bell by the door to go outside to do his business, and sometimes he will try it twice to make sure he can’t get any more treats.
Woody is not only the youngest pup but he was also the littlest and born a full day after his brothers. Despite his position as the “runt,” he has kept pace with the other boys, but still get to live at home with Ruby. Three additional canine foster sibling try their best to divert his attention from training. Woody often gets labeled as the most mellow and his favorite napping spot is anywhere he can cuddle up next to you. He is a very focused and attentive boy, pleased to help pick up around the house by retrieving items from the floor and giving a great kiss when it is needed most.