Our last field trip of the field-trip-a-palooza was to Canine Companions for Independence. This was our seventh or eigth field trip/special event in about 3 weeks. It's hard trying to shove all this in a small amount of time, but that's the way it worked. I didn't set this one up, but I was glad we went. Hubby even took the day off to join us. He saves a week of vacation so he can go on field trips with us. If we don't do field trips during the week, or we don't use all of his field trip days, we go to the beach for a long weekend. Either way, I say lucky hubby, but even better, lucky us.
CCI has five offices across the country. The facility we visited covers at least five states and focuses mainly on wheelchair bound recipients. The dogs are completely free to the recipients and the organization runs mainly off donations. The Busch (Seaworld and beer) family and Darden restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster) is a primary sponsor for the location in Orlando. They breed all of their own dogs, and do not accept dogs from the "outside". At any one time, they can have as many as 30 dogs at their facility at one time. That's a lot of clean up, if you know what I mean.
It was a great field trip. I am so glad we went. They told us about trainer families. Trainer families get the dogs at about 2-3 months and keep them for a year to 16 months, depending on the dog and the training. Then the dogs go to one of the training facilities to keep up their "schooling" and eventually go to a family. A statistic I thought was pretty weird was that up to 65% of the dogs aren't able to finish training for one reason or another. Those dogs are then adopted out to good homes. Hubby, being the sucker that he is, picked up an adoption form. I am happy to say that he has yet to fill it out and I am ok with that. But, once again, they will match a dog with a family to make sure there is a good fit. I might keep that in mind if the paperwork ever gets turned in.
Our last activity was supposed to be a play yesterday. We didn't go since I have two snotty kids. We were looking forward to it, but I didn't want to interrupt anyone else's play by hacking, coughing, and snotting. So we went to the park instead. It's only a few minutes from the house if we needed to go home and nobody would be bothered by my snotty kids. That worked for us.
Have a great day.