Cameron at the beach (ignore the date on the photo)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Florida Trip

If you have read my last post, then you know that I, along with my puppy raiser mom, her daughter, mother-in-law, and a pregnant female named Dancer all traveled to Florida for the weekend. Mom was going down to take Dancer back to the guide dog school so that she could get ready to whelp her puppies, to meet Hugh's new 'forever person', and to meet my sponsors.

It was a long journey, and I mean loooonnnnnng. We left around 6:30 a.m. Friday morning. It took us a total of 14 hours driving time to reach our destination, whereas, it usually takes only 12. It was a long time to be in one place for a while. We had to stop plenty of times to get gas, busy, eat, and get our riding wiggles out. Anytime we stopped, we were all ready to stretch our legs. We finally got down to the hotel we were staying at at around 8:30 or 9:00 that night. We unloaded our cargo, breathing and non, and settled down for a good night's rest

The next morning mom got up and let us doggies get our busies done while her mother-in-law changed the baby. Dancer and I had our breakfast before mom had to get her ready to go back to the school. I had to stay in my crate at the hotel while everyone went to the guide dog school. Anytime someone attends Puppy Raiser Day, they are not allowed to bring any other dogs or pets with them as this may distract the working dogs. We don't want that to happen. The students and dogs are still bonding with one another and we don't want to do anything to break that bond.

While at Puppy Raiser Day, every family was introduced to the trainers and Puppy Department staff, some things are explained to everyone like: keeping things positive while talking to the new handlers of the dogs, not drawing attention to themselves while the teams are working their routes, asking before petting the dogs, and not exchanging contact information. The puppy Raiser families must keep things positive so that does not interfere with the bond of the dog and handler, they must also ask before petting the dogs because it is guide dog ettiquete, and they are not allowed to exchange contact information for the same reason. Mom was read Hugh's new handler's (Jesse) bio as was everyone else and then everyone got to go outside and watch each team work their graduation route. Hugh and Jesse went first and they did a fantastic job together. After all the teams were finished, all of the families came inside to meet the students and get to know one another, talk about the dogs, and eat lunch. Jesse is a wonderful man from what momma says. He takes care of his mother that has the same condition that he has, he can cook, and he has children and grandchildren of his own. Mom really liked getting to meet Jesse. Jesse really loves Hugh. He loves everything about Hugh. Jesse says that he thinks Hugh knows what he feels and that comes from the special bond that they already share. Of course Hugh recognized mom, baby, and her mother-in-law right away and gave them all plenty of lovin'. The trainers and staff all loved getting to see how Hugh reacted with the baby. She still knows who he is. After all, they grew up together. Mom and baby got to take a picture with Hugh and Jesse. After Puppy Raiser Day was over, everyone that wanted to, got to tour the campus. They got to play with the puppies in the puppy kennel and then they got to go to the main kennel where Hugh's siblings are still living just waiting to be matched with the right person.

Mom came to get me as soon as she was finished at the school since we were due to meet my sponsors at 2:00 that afternoon. We all met at a fancy Dutch Heritage restaurant in Sarasota, FL. Everyone was very excited to finally get to meet one another. The Camerons' are all very nice and they were all thrilled to get to see me again. They had gotten to see me while I was very young at the guide dog school. They enjoyed seeing how well-behaved I was in my pupppy coat. I layed down under the table while all the humans ate their lunch, laughed, and told a lot of different stories. We had a great time together. Sometimes they even come up here to North Carolina to visit. It would be so cool if they got to come up here and visit sometime.

After we were done at the restaurant, mom, baby, mother-in-law, and I all took a trip to the beach for a little bit, then went back to the hotel for the night. We got a good nights' rest and made the journey back home which didn't take as long as the trip down to Florida. Trips home are never as long as the journey away. We made it home safe and sound and had a wonderful weekend thanks to some very special people!


Thursday, April 15, 2010


Hello all,

We (my mom, the baby, mom's mother-in-law, and a pregnant Collie, Dancer who is going down to the school to prepare to whelp her puppies) will all be leaving for Florida in the morning. Wish us a safe and happy trip. It will be a long ride for all of us. Mom will get to see Hugh again and we will get to meet my sponsors for the first time. We are so excited. We are returning Sunday.


Friday, April 9, 2010

Union County Dog Walk

My raiser and I will be at the Union County Dog Walk in Monroe, NC tomorrow (April 17th) doing a presentation for Southeastern Guide Dogs. There will be a booth for us and someone is going to get on stage and talk about the school and the raising program.

Mom is bringing pictures of Benjamin, Hugh, and I to have so that everyone can see what we look like in our baby pictures and what the In-For-Training pictures look like. If you are in the area or would like to come, we will be downtown Monroe. I think there is a fee of $15 if you are bringing a dog. Please come on out and support Southeastern Guide Dogs if you can.

Love, Cameron

P.S. one more week until mom gets to see Hugh again with his forever person. We will be leaving early Friday morning and I may even get to meet my sponsors while I am there. So excited!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Congratulations, Hugh!

Mom has received word today from the Area Coordinator for our group and found out that Hugh, my big brother, was matched! Puppy Raiser Day for him will be next Saturday in Palmetto, FL where we are from. She is planning on attending this event. She wouldn't miss it for the world. She is hoping that while she is there, she will get to meet my sponsors. Cross your fingers that we can work something out. Mom will get to meet the person that Hugh is matched with and will get to tell them all about Hugh. Mom is super thrilled about Hugh's news and getting to meet his new team-mate.

Mom has also found out that Dave's, Hugh's brother, match did not work out so he has been sent back In-For-Training but he is class ready. Maybe his perfect team-mate will be at the school soon and he will get matched.

Congratulations, Hugh. We love you very much and wish you the best of luck in your career as a guide dog!


Saturday, April 3, 2010


I want to start off by saying mom and dad plus their parents got 75% of the yard improvements done today. They all worked hard together while Bristol and I ran around the yard. It was so much fun to get outdoors for a while even if you are working. Mom got her flowerbeds made up and mulched and she put mulch around the trees in the yard to make them look landscaped. Next project: to finish filling up the pool and cleaning it really good for the summer and mulching the entire fenced-in area where she lets me and Bristol run.

Mom is boiling eggs to dye for Easter. She is going to make a few different colors. She says this is an Easter tradition. I bet they would taste yummy. Guess I will have to take her word for it. That is okay. I think I would much rather watch her.

Hope you all have a happy and safe Easter,

P.S. Mom wanted to me to share the news about Hugh's brother, Dave. He has just been matched with a blind or visually impaired person! That is fantastic! Mom got to keep Dave for a couple of days and took him back to the guide dog school when it was time for he and Hugh to return. She loved him. He was a very nice dog. He will make a great guide.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Yard Improvements

Today has been a very fun day! I have spent most of the day outside running around and playing with other dogs. I really loved getting to do that! It was decently warm but not unbearable. It was around 90 degrees.

I helped my mom babysit today. She iced a practice cake that she is doing for a wedding rehearsal dinner. It is a tuxedo cake. The real cake is going to look good, I can already tell. I sat at her feet while she did that and a little while later, we all got to go outside and play for a couple of hours. My mom's family has several other dogs that are all very friendly and I got to chase them around the yard, then they chased me. I made sure to stay close to my mom, though. She keeps a good eye on me and i do the same for her.

After babysitting time was over, we went home. Mom was going to go with her mother-in-law to pick up some flowers so she can start a flower bed. I stayed home while they went out. I was ready to take a break for a while. I wouldn't have minded going with them, but a catnap sounded great to me.

When mom returned, she had some beautiful flowers in the bed of the truck. She has all different kids and they look pretty interesting. I know the flower bed is going to look great. I may not be able to see all of the colors of the flowers, but I know they will be pretty when they are fully bloomed.

in addition to planting the flowers, mom needed to mow/weed-eat the grass inside the fence. It was getting a little taller than it needed to be. Bristol and I decided to play inside the fence while she worked, I even walked straight up to the weed-eater trying to sniff it, but I was warned not to do that, so I quickly changed my mind.

Mom did not have enough daylight to get her flowers planted, so she will do that tomorrow. Hopefully tomorrow, she will get to visit her grandma in the hospital.

He grandma is doing better. She still has trouble every now and then remembering where she is but she is reminded. She has a successful surgery putting two shunts in her skull to help with the swelling. She will need time to fully recover. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers.


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Prayers Needed

Hello, Cameron here,

My mom's family is in need of your prayers. Her grandmother is in the hospital right now because she has been having some problems with normal daily functions due to a brain tumor that she has. It seems that the brain tumor is secreting a protein that is causing fluid buildup on her spinal cord. The doctors have done several MRIs and CT scans and have found that the tumor itself is not growing but it is secreting a certain protein that is causing all of these problems.

She had some of the brain tumor removed about six years ago and was in surgery for 22 hours. Not all of the tumor could be removed because a lot of nerves were in that region and the doctors did not want to take that risk which is very understandable. My mom's mom and her aunt (mom's aunt) have been visiting her the past couple of days and she seemed to be fine until late last night. My 'grandma' called the hospital to check on her mom and was she fine then, but later when her sister had called, she had begun to start fighting the nurses. The nurses had ordered another CT scan and found that more fluid had begun to buildup on her brain. She is being given an antibiotic and steroids to help with the inflammation and the accumulation of fluid.

The next morning my grandma and her sister went to see her again and she was still acting the same. Her behavior had changed very quickly and she didn't recognize the nurses that had been taking care of her since she had been in the hospital. She will be having two shunts put in within the next day or two to help drain the fluid. One will be a temporary shunt and the other will be permanent. We are not sure what will happen after that. At least the doctors doing the surgery for the shunts will be the same doctors that did the surgery when she had most of the tumor removed.

My mom's family is very worried about her. Mom hasn't gotten to see her grandmother yet but is hoping to get to see her tomorrow. Please keep her family in your prayers. They would really appreciate that. Hopefully her grandmother will get to come home soon.

Puppy love,