Schein is a Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) puppy, which means he is no ordinary dog.
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!
Canine Companions for Independence service dogs have an important job, and an important role in society. So, beyond raising and training puppies, part of my job is educating the public.
When I volunteer to go to different events with CCI, I speak with people about service dogs, like making them aware of how to behave around a service dog. For example, never pet one unless given permission first, and never try to distract a working dog with whistles or food. Believe it or not, I have had all of these happen to me in the years I’ve had puppies in training.
My husband and I have been puppy raising for five years and love to help raise awareness for CCI.
This year, taking on a bigger role with Schein has been very exciting. Working together with Henry Schein Animal Health and CCI has been a very gratifying and wonderful experience. It’s also afforded us the opportunity to spread the word about CCI to a bigger audience.
In March, we got to meet the Henry Schein Animal Health (HSAH) team during its national sales meeting in Las Vegas and participated in its Share Fair. It was a blast. Along with Megan Koester from CCI, we introduced HSAH’s entire U.S. sales team to Schein and answered their questions about CCI.
Everyone wanted to meet Schein and more than a few got down on the floor to hug him and get a photo. Many already knew about the relationship between Henry Schein and CCI but for those who didn’t know, Megan educated them about CCI.
My husband Charlie and I find talking about CCI and our puppies in training to be really easy.
People are very curious about working dogs and ask many questions, so I usually let the conversation be led by the line of questioning. Personally, my public speaking skills may have gotten better over the years, though I still get nervous when I need to present in front of a large group. In these situations I like to show off the puppy’s skills and get the focus off of me.
Watching how great the dogs are when working with their person and seeing people have more independence is very gratifying.
This makes handing the puppy back — who we’ve spent 18 months nurturing and training — all worthwhile. The impact my husband and I make directly for CCI and on making people’s lives better is very tangible; I can SEE the difference. We have watched our trainees move forward and work to make life better for others. This inspires us in a huge way.
Click through the gallery below to see Schein’s latest adventures:
Seeing the sights in Las Vegas after the Henry Schein Animal Health meeting and Share Fair; visiting our favorite team, the OSU men’s volleyball team; and working on future-service-dog skills at Home Depot.
Bonus: Schein having a fun night in Las Vegas!