Schein’s Pupdates: A Meaningful May

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Schein is a Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) puppy, which means he is no ordinary dog.

Through Canine Companions, he is learning to help a child or adult with disabilities increase their independence by being a friend and lending a helping hand paw.

Schein is being raised by Sallie, a volunteer puppy raiser who will care for and train him for 18 months. He’ll then go through Professional Training and ultimately find his “furever home” with a human companion who needs his help.

Read our “Pupdates” every month to learn more about Schein and Sallie’s adventures!

May was an especially interesting month for Schein. He was able to do a lot of good in the community, and enjoy some new and unique experiences.

A friend of mine is the Teaching Assistant for the Special Education classroom at New Albany High School.

She understands that facility dogs and service dogs can be a big help for students like hers, and I was so happy to be able to introduce them to two CCI trainees.

It was very meaningful for me to see Schein interact with this group of students.

He and his fellow trainee, Oberon, were totally themselves and behaved just as you’d expect: well-mannered and excited to spend time with new friends. Oberon is always a little more outgoing than Schein, and he helps his buddy come out of his shell in social situations. The two are a great team!

It puts me at ease to watch Schein and Oberon in action with the kids.

Dogs don’t care if a child is different — if they’re seated in a wheelchair or even utilize a computer to speak. They treat everyone just the same. It was beautiful.

This class was just as curious about service dogs as any other group of students. They had questions prepared for our presentation and were very polite and kind. Their questions ranged from “What type of breeds are Schein and Oberon?” to “What commands do they know already?” and “Is it hard to give the puppy back to CCI at the end of your time together?”

I hear these questions very frequently from kids, especially the last one.

It’s a tough concept for children to grasp, that puppy raisers have to give the puppy back after spending so much time together.

For kids, many of whom are growing up with a dog of their own, they cannot imagine having to let go of their furry friends.

The kids understand that I spend a lot of time with Schein in our home teaching, training, and falling in love with him, so I have to explain that raising Schein is something I do for other people, not myself.

Even though I enjoy volunteering for CCI because I love dogs, I know that my role is to do my best in preparing puppies to be an incredible help for people who really need it.

It will be hard to give Schein back to CCI, but some things in life that are worthwhile are never easy!

May was full of meaningful experiences for Schein — everything from socializing to fundraising to learning how to handle unusual situations (like hanging out with firefighters!).

Click through the gallery below to check out his latest adventures.

By Sallie Carey, Canine Companions for Independence Volunteer Puppy Raiser in Columbus, OH
Henry Schein, Inc. is a proud partner of Canine Companions for Independence. The company provides puppy raisers with “care packages” filled with supplies to help raise puppies during their first 18 months and works with many of the puppies’ veterinarians. Learn more about the partnership here.

Keep up with our Pupdates!

Schein’s Pupdates: Becoming a Canine Companions for Independence Assistant Dog

Schein’s Pupdates: Teaching Kids About Service Dogs

Schein’s Pupdates: Making Memories in March