Friday, November 9, 2012


"So I guess this is goodbye." That's what I told Hobart II as I walked out of CCI's North Central Training Center today. You know what? I can say that I'm proud and have few regrets! I walked away from that kennel with my head held high, because no matter what happens I know that I have taken time to see Hobart from point A to B.

The day was beautiful. I went to the Dublin Rec Center and talked to some of my PR friends and let Hobart and his pretty sister Hoya hang out for a bit. We got some pictures (which you'll see below) and then we all went in for the ceremony. Today CCI has successfully placed more than 4,000 teams and I got to witness that milestone. It was strange for me getting up and receiving my flower and getting applause, because I still don't really feel like that turn-in time has come around again!

When Suzanne introduced Hobart and I she said, "Hobart was raised by Elijah and his family, but mostly Elijah." I found that quite amusing and so did my family ;)

During the ceremony some donors talked about their contributions to CCI and CCI's contributions to the world. We had a touching moment when one of the twelve service dog graduates asked the audience to give a hand to the puppy raisers and to the trainers. She thanked the Canine Companions staff for all their hard work and gave them all a gift :)

When we got back to the North Central center we got more pictures of Hobart (which you'll see below) talked to some of the other puppy raisers, who were turning-in puppies today and then said goodbye to Hobart. He hopped right on in to his kennel. When his kennel mate joined him they started to play.

It all feels very surreal. Hobart has reached his last bit of training with me, but I guess I know that his journey will continue either as a service dog or as a released pet. Either way I hope he finds a place to be happy. My emotions aren't really as worked up as I thought they'd be. I was smiling to much to even think about crying. Maybe when I wake up tomorrow I'll realize that it's over for a few months, but maybe it'll just sink in gradually and I'll be content with where things are now!

kennel time

pep talk .
~Elijah (with Hobart in my prayers)


  1. What great pictures, Elijah! Glad it was a confident and happy turn-in. Looking forward to updates and enjoy your break! =)

  2. Thanks, Elle! :)I'm looking forward to hearing about Haddie's turn-in!

  3. Congratulations on a job well done! You definitely deserve to be proud of giving Hobart everything he needs to succeed. The rest is up to him and whatever choice he makes will be the right one!

  4. Elijah, what another great job you have done with Hobart. It was great to see you, Hobart and your family at graduation/matriculation. Looking forward to hearing about puppy #3. Debbie & I get puppy #4 (GABE III) in early December.
    Take care, Linda

  5. I can't wait to hear more about Gabe!!!!


  6. Wonderful pictures, thank you for sharing!
    I will keep Hobart in my prayers, and hopefully you'll be getting good updates, real soon!
    I turned Brandon in on October 13, and looking forward to getting his monthly updates, I was just notified he passed his medicals and starting training, it's a very exciting and nerve-racking time!

    -Brandon's Raiser


We love hearing from our readers!
Thanks for stopping by,
Elijah and Hobart