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As part of our Puppy Love Month campaign, we asked some of our Puppy Raisers to write a letter to their puppy’s future handler, sharing a snapshot of all the work (and love) that goes into future Assistance Dogs. Adi, Tania and Sebastien are currently raising Juniper, and recently shared a letter with us.

Puppy raisers help build strong foundations for our puppies who have the potential to become future Assistance Dogs. By raising a puppy for Dogs for Better Lives, you will become a part of a team dedicated to helping others. Changing the life of a family in need to live a more independent lifestyle with the help of the assistance dog you helped raise.

Interested in becoming a Puppy Raiser? Visit our Puppy Raising page for more information or to apply.

To: Juniper's Future Person/Handler
From: Puppy Raisers Adi, Tania and Sebastien & Puppy in Training, Juniper

Dear Future Juniper Lover,

Hello! We are Adi, Tania, and Sebastien DeClerck and we are currently helping raise DBL puppy Juniper. We have had Juniper since she was nine weeks old and she has been wonderful since the first day she arrived in our home. We are sure you are also going to love this dog!

Juniper is currently 7 months old. She has a very easy-going personality and loves to show her excitement by wagging her tail enthusiastically. She has a tail wag that makes her entire body wiggle. We call her “wiggly butt” because she looks like an overly excited belly dancer. We have been practicing many skills with her; so far, she knows sit, stay, come, leave-it and drop-it.  She is a wonderful learner and is very motivated by treats. She is a typical lab who will eat anything. We have to keep a close eye on her because she is very tall and agile and will sneak a taste if the opportunity arises and we are not nearby. We are working on her sneaky skills!

At home, Juniper loves to play with our black lab, Ezra. They’re favorite activities to do together are walking to the dog park, chewing bones, playing tug of war, and lots of wrestling. Juniper also lives with our two cats, Cheetoh and Louise. Juniper and Louise are good buddies and will occasionally rub cheeks together. Juniper has a lot of fun in our active household!  Juniper is also very fond of dog toys! When her furry housemates are napping she often empties her toy basket to keep herself entertained. Her favorite toy is a squeaky plush fish! She loves toys so much that she will often take them to her bed and sleep with them.

We hope that you will enjoy having Juniper as much as we have. She has brought us much happiness and we cherish the many enjoyable moments with have shared with her. Tania works from home three days of the week and will attest to what a great work buddy she has been. We became puppy raisers because our daughter, Adi, went to a museum exhibit about dogs and was amazed to learn about all of the wonderful jobs that dogs accomplish and we thought it would be good to help others in this capacity. We will miss her when she is gone (especially Tania), but we look forward to the day when we hear that she has been placed with her human for life!

Warm wishes,

Adi, Tania, and Sebastien

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