Harness & Leash Edition 5 – September 2010 Letter from the Editor Happy National Guide Dog Month to you and your Leader Dog. September is also National Sewing Month, National Potato Month, and National Chicken Month – I definitely think the dogs deserve top billing! If you have already read the attached issue of Update, you may have noticed that we have referred to you, the people who have come to Leader Dog for services, as “clients” and not as “students.” This change has recently been made for several reasons. First, to support the understanding that you are our customer and we are here to serve your needs before, during and after your training at Leader Dog. We are not an organization that considers our job done when you leave to go home with your new dog, new GPS, or new O&M skills. Second, to internally reinforce the fact that you have chosen us, by your own free will, to supply the professional services you need to become a more independent traveler; and that it is our responsibility to treat everyone with respect (all clients) and as an adult (for those clients 18 and older). You will still be hearing the words “training,” “instructor,” “class,” and “alumni;” but you’ll also hear the terms “potential clients” for people applying to a LDB program and “client” for those in training and those that have completed training. We hope you agree that the new terminology better reflects the relationship between you and LDB. I hope everyone is looking forward to the cooler days of Fall. I know I enjoy the pleasure my dogs take in running around the yard without getting overheated. Take Care, Rachelle Kniffen, Communications Specialist What an Experience: The ACB and AER Conferences By Stacy Benmark, Student Services Director This past summer we had the pleasure of attending three major conferences with the goal of raising awareness about Leader Dog and the services we offer. The conference I attended was the American Council of the Blind (ACB) in Phoenix, Arizona. They say Arizona is a dry heat, but 115 degrees is still hot! Leader Dog also had a presence at the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) conference in Dallas, Texas. ACB and NFB are membership organizations that work to improve the lives of people that are blind through advocacy, education, and technology. You can learn more about each organization at their websites, www.acb.org and www.nfb.org. As a long-time employee of Leader Dog, I have spoken with thousands of applicants and graduates of LDB programs. Being able to visit with graduates in person away from the Leader Dog campus and share the excitement of the conference was a wonderful experience. There were many well-behaved, well- trained dog guides in attendance from various schools. In this issue of Harness and Leash you will find an article written by Stephanie Sherwood about preparing your dog for attendance at a major conference which can present very unique situations for both you and your dog. I enjoyed the opportunity to speak with current and potential clients and learn about new products and services for individuals with visual impairments. My favorite find at the conference was an accessible, audible dart board. I liked it so much I ordered one for the LDB residence facility as soon as I returned to the office. The second conference I attended was the Association of Education and Rehabilitation for Blind and Visually Impaired (AERBVI) in Little Rock, Arkansas. During this conference I had the opportunity to talk with hundreds of rehabilitation professionals including many orientation and mobility specialists. Experiencing their collective passion for assisting people who are blind or visually impaired was exciting. Leader Dog had a steady stream of visitors at our booth interested in learning more about our Accelerated Mobility Program and about Leader Dog giving a free pedestrian GPS to clients attending our dog guide program. I returned to the office rejuvenated and full of new ideas and contacts to improve the services and support for our clients. As Leader Dog focuses on the voice of our clients, we would like to hear from you regarding your thoughts and views on conferences. Do you attend them? Why or why not? Please take a moment to contact your coordinator with your comments. The contact information for our client services coordinators is always located at the end of this newsletter. Give your pooch a smooch from me! Warm regards, Stacy Benmark From the Vet’s Office Common Questions About Dental Care for Dogs By Dr. Kelly Wilson Why does my dog’s breath smell so bad? The most common reason is your dog has odor-causing plaque and tartar on its teeth. Your dog’s teeth need to be brushed daily to remove food particles and bacteria from the surface of its teeth. If you are not brushing your dog’s teeth, bacteria will form plaque which hardens into tartar in 48 hours. Once hardened, brushing will not get it off. Just like you have to have your teeth cleaned by a dentist to remove tartar, your dog needs the same type of treatment. Why does my dog need anesthesia to clean its teeth? Removing years of tartar build up on teeth takes a time and special equipment. A veterinary dental technician can do a faster and more effective cleaning when your dog is asleep. Cleaning under anesthesia also allows the veterinary team to thoroughly examine all surfaces of each tooth, looking for cracks or chips in the teeth, gum erosion, and periodontal pockets of infection. This type of cleaning also lets the veterinary team take dental radiographs to look for problems at the tooth roots. Dogs can develop gingivitis and periodontal disease just like humans. It is estimated that 50 percent of dogs over the age of 5 have at least one painful problem in their teeth. Why is dental health so important? Infections in the mouth can get into the bloodstream, starting infections elsewhere in the body, including the heart or bladder. Tooth root infections are painful, and abscesses can be dangerous and expensive to treat. Preventative dental cleanings will save you money and save your dog from experiencing mouth pain. How do I prevent these tooth problems? If your dog is a puppy, start brushing now! If you can get into your dog’s mouth, try to brush its teeth with a toothbrush and water. You can also rub their teeth and gums with a baby washcloth or gauze wrapped around your finger to prevent tartar build up and keep gums healthy. Make sure to use specially formulated dog toothpaste that does not have fluoride in it - never use human toothpaste. Ideally, you should brush a dog’s teeth every day; at minimum you should do it three times a week. If your dog already has tartar build up, start with a proper dental cleaning from your veterinarian and then regularly brush its teeth at home. Don’t let your dog chew on very hard objects that can break their teeth. Ask your veterinarian to recommend a specific dental diet that can reduce plaque formation or for a dental rinse that you can apply to your dog’s teeth to reduce bacteria in its mouth. Plan Ahead for Both You and Your Dog By Stephanie Sherwood, Field Services Representative Plan Ahead for Both You and Your Dog By Stephanie Sherwood, Field Services Representative Recently I attended the National Federation for the Blind (NFB) conference in Dallas, Texas. There were many dog guide users in attendance. The conference was held in a huge hotel that consisted of many hallways, elevators, escalators, lobbies and conference rooms. It reminded me of a huge indoor mall and was fairly complicated to navigate. I found myself getting turned around and losing my direction on more than one occasion. Thankfully, the staff was well prepared and they were able to give me (and the other guests) assistance. This was my first NFB conference so I didn’t know what to expect. The conference was held over the 4th of July weekend, so I experienced both extreme heat and loud fireworks. These factors, combined with the unfamiliar environment, can be stressful for people – and also stressful for your dog. I observed many dogs displaying signs of stress during the conference. When I pointed out the signs of dog stress to owners, they often responded, “He never acts like this” or “She usually never does that.” When dogs are suddenly placed in unusual and chaotic environments, they can become stressed. Dogs can be overwhelmed by the number of dogs and humans in one location, the unusual noises, new smells, and unfamiliar environment. There are several things you can do when planning your trip to help make sure your dog can handle the stress and enjoy the experience as much as you. First, pack for your dog when you pack for yourself. Remember to bring your dog’s food, dish, blanket or bed and waste disposal bags. These familiar items, along with a favorite Nylabone or toy, can be comforting for your dog when they are away from home. Next, consider how you’ll travel during your trip. Are you traveling by bus, car, train or airplane? Will you be able to find comfortable resting spots during the journey for both you and your dog? It is helpful to use a combination of guide work and sighted assistance to give your dog short rests along the way. Also, remember to stick to your dog’s feeding, water, and relief routines throughout the trip. I spoke with one gentleman who had traveled for 23 hours by bus with his dog to get to the conference. He had prepared ahead by bringing a collapsible water dish in his backpack, notifying the bus company that he would be traveling with a dog guide, requesting a seat with the maximum amount of space to ensure comfort for his dog, and coordinating assistance at each bus stop to find an appropriate spot to relieve his dog. He said the trip went well and they encountered no issues. When you arrive at your destination, give your dog an opportunity to relieve itself before going inside. Be prepared for the new environment and anticipate your dog’s reactions. For example, new smells may encourage your dog to investigate more than normal. Other dog guides may be present which can contribute to stress behaviors such as pulling, lunging, shying away, panting or trembling. Support your dog in this new and unfamiliar environment by becoming familiar with your surroundings so you are comfortable with giving your dog commands. During your stay, don’t be afraid to ask for sighted assistance. Everyone at NFB, visually impaired or sighted, had to ask for help on where to go and how to get there. Getting help prevents the possibility of traveling in circles, thereby reducing stress for both you and your dog. Remember, you need to know where you are going to direct your dog properly. Make sure you keep your dog in mind throughout the conference. At NFB, I noticed a man whose dog was trembling and panting and its eyes were dilated. The owner was speaking to someone at a booth and was unaware that his dog was stressed. Once advised, he took his dog outside and then to his room for a break. Remember, sometimes your dog needs a break, even if you don’t. Oddly enough, public bathrooms in hotels can pose their own issues. Some bathroom stalls are very small and you may not want to bring your dog inside with you. In this situation you can ask someone to hold your dog outside the stall or try to locate a larger stall. At NFB, one woman tried to take her dog into a small stall and accidentally shut the door on the dog’s tail. She then shut the dog’s leash in the door which forced the dog to stand outside of the stall where it was accidentally clipped by canes. A great alternative in this type of situation is to use the bathroom in your hotel room. I found that among the hustle and bustle of the conference, it was easy to lose track of time. This can be detrimental to your dog if you aren’t allowing regular water and bathroom breaks. It is a good idea to set the alarm on your watch or phone or plan to “break” your dog when you get a break during a meeting. Not every dog at the conference was affected by all of the additional stimuli. A few were even playful and wanted to socialize with the other dogs. Some people allowed their dog to interact with other dogs and some did not. This decision is all part of having and maintaining good dog awareness, monitoring your dog and making sure they are well behaved and under control at all times. Traveling to conferences such as the NFB can be exciting, fun and informative. Conferences are a great way to meet new people, connect with old friends, learn about new products, and discover new programs. With the correct preparation, the trip can be a great experience for both you and your dog. A Letter from Leader Dog Maddy By Jim Platzer, Leader Dog Graduate, Class 05-09 The following letter was read by Jim Platzer at our 23rd Annual Puppy and Breeding Stock Day. It represents what he feels his Leader Dog Maddy would say to her puppy raisers if she could. Since there was not a dry eye in the house, you may want to go grab a box of tissues in preparation. Dear Raiser Family, It's been a while; and I have a lot of things to share with you, and have so many things to say... When you brought me back to Leader Dog, I saw you cry and I was worried about you. At the time, I didn’t realize all that was happening and the part you played in it. I missed you terribly. Now you're gone, but there are still things that need to be said... things that need to be mentioned. The most part of which is saying “thank you.” Thank you for sharing your home with me, and caring for me like I was your own. Your gentle touch, your undying support, your loving arms… your understanding says it all. Thank you for your patience. Thank you for being a parent and a teacher. Thank you for instilling the qualities that brings real meaning to my life and my work. Best of all... thank you for being so selfless. You defined the word "family" and because of your admirable actions, I felt loved. You left a great impact on me, and as such, I have chosen to live an exceptional life. It was a challenge I had to consider since you were able to show me the value of good behavior, and the value of hard work. I may not have comprehended everything happening to me when we returned to the school, but now that I’m a Leader Dog, I understand completely. The most rewarding endeavor in life is to care for others. With your help, we have given back independence and mobility for someone who is blind. I am caring and assisting my blind partner with the same level of love and caring that you taught me. We have done wonderful things together; I’ve traveled on planes, gone to school, went to the workplace and even saw the American Idol Tour when it came to town. We have a very special relationship that exceeds anything I would have expected. I worry about the time when I won’t be able to help my partner any longer. My only salvation for thinking this way is that I know you will be out there… raising another puppy that will follow in my footsteps. This is not the last time I will say thank you. I will always be grateful for the wonderful things you imparted on me. Thank you, for being a part of my life and for being my mentor. With so much love, Your puppy More Airports Create Areas for Pets to Take Care of Business By Roger Yu, USA Today This article was reprinted with permission from USA Today. Yu, Roger. More Airports Create Areas for Pets to Take Care of Business. http://www.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2010-07-20- airportpets20_ST_N.htm, July 20, 2010. Dogs Need to Go, Too. So Airports Are Adding Doggie Restrooms. Airports say "pet relief areas" enhance customer service. But they're also being nudged by a federal rule that orders airlines to work with airports to install facilities for travelers who have service dogs. Among airports with new dog bathrooms: Atlanta, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington Dulles, Washington National, Chicago O'Hare and Phoenix. The facilities are typically outside, within walking distance of the terminal. The federal rule requires they be kept clean, free of odor, contain a gravel or sand surface and have adequate drainage. Some airports have added synthetic grass, fire hydrants and benches. "Many of our members travel," says Melanie Brunson, executive director of the American Council of the Blind, which pushed for the rule. "Increasingly, you don't get much time between flights. You don't have a whole lot of time to take care of your dog's needs." About 2 million pets and other animals fly each year in the U.S., according to the Transportation Department. But convenient relief areas weren't required until the department published changes last year to the Air Carrier Access Act, which spells out travel rights for people who have physical disabilities. "If there was one (before)," she says, "it was in the boondocks, and (travelers) didn't have much time to get there." Neva Fairchild of Carrollton, Texas, who has a service dog and is an American Foundation for the Blind employee, says it can be embarrassing for owners of dogs that relieve themselves at an airport curb. "I can understand if people are offended by dogs relieving themselves at a pole 20 feet from the airport," she says. "But when the dog has to go, it has to go." Fairchild says she'd like to see more relief inside security zones at airports to avoid clearing security-screening checkpoints again for connecting flights. Washington Dulles is one of the few airports with indoor facilities within its security zone, in addition to three relief areas outside. Engineers designed them after studying other dog parks. They contain ventilation and wall-mounted water-distribution systems for cleaning, Dulles spokeswoman Courtney Mickalonis says. Before assigning a new pet area, Atlanta had "maintenance issues" with travelers who let their dogs use landscaped areas without cleaning up, says Gary Summerlin, an engineer at the world's busiest airport, where about 6,000 animals are flown annually in cargo. But pet owners using the "formal" area have been more responsible, he says. Circle of Life Births Callie (hosted by Bob and Shirley Beardslee) x Cruiser (hosted by Julie Gardner) – Seven Labrador retrievers. Cammy (hosted by Jamie Gunnink and family) x Tigger (hosted by Robyn Gage) – Seven Labrador retrievers. Casey (hosted by Jessie Kramer and family) x Seamus (hosted by Lora Michaels) – Four Labrador retrievers. Chloe (hosted by Sue Friedl) x Sy (hosted by Katie Olds) – Four Labrador retrievers. Daisy (hosted by Gail Haba and family) x Rocky (hosted by Jean Jacquin) – One golden retriever. Donna (hosted by Diana Weber) x Benson (hosted by Keith McGregor) – Three Labrador retrievers. Dreamer (hosted by Kelly and Veronica Crake) x Takota (hosted by Nancy vonKoehnen) – Eleven Labrador retrievers. Karma (hosted by Tracy and Aaron Baughey) x Benson (hosted by Keith McGregor) – Eight Labrador retrievers. Koni (hosted by Nance Halle) x Jackson (hosted by Jamie Crawford) – Three Labrador retrievers. Lacy (hosted by Janice White) x Hardy (hosted by Gerald and Cynthia Sweet) – Seven Labrador/golden crosses. Libby (hosted by George and Nina McFarlane) x Cruiser (hosted by Julie Gardner) – Eleven Labrador retrievers. Luna (hosted by Nan Nellenbach) x Buddy (hosted by Brad and Hollye Mackler) – Three Labrador retrievers. Parade (hosted by Debbie Santucci) x Tigger (hosted by Robert and Robyn Gage) – Three Labrador retrievers. Sandie (hosted by Lesa Mignot) x Axel (hosted by Mike and Sue Kinyon) – One Labrador/golden retriever crosses. Sienna (hosted by Robert and Mary Hovansian) x Sy (hosted by Katie Olds and family) – Seven Labrador retrievers. Sissy (hosted by Carrie Pryce) x Tigger (hosted by Robert and Robyn Gage) – Ten Labrador retrievers. Tradition (hosted by Sterlie and Janet Miller) x Tigger (hosted by Robert and Robyn Gage) – Eight Labrador retrievers. Willow (hosted by Carol Page and family) x Jonah (hosted by Shari and George Sprouse) – Eight Labrador retrievers. Willow (hosted by Lora Glei-Dietz and family) x Hunter (hosted by Beth Mattei) – Three Labrador retrievers. Zyla (hosted by Gary and Paula King) x Cruiser (hosted by Julie Gardner) – Eight Labrador retrievers. Breeding Stock Retired Axel – Sue and Mike Kinyon Cooper – The Holton family Dora – The Karagosian family Hope – Cherie Baker Lilly – Dotty Hall Mia – The Haba family Robyn – Rob and Julie Kerton Trax – The Hitchcock family True – Ron and Kim Wattles Breeding Stock Deceased Kali – The Kwiatkowski family Leader Dogs Retired Bently – Ruth Guevara Cameo – Beth Anderson Casy – Gabriela Perez Chloe – Cristill Cox C.J. – Doris Bryant Cody – Sophia Clay Company – Sheryl Gordon Cruiser – Bobby Stouton Cupcake – Theresa Lambert Cypress – Eugene Richards Delilah – Jennie Facer Eddie – Sharon Yde Harley – Robert Miller Hope – Silvia Lozado Badillo Jacy – Richard Poncin Joy – Windy Peyton Kelly – Celine Bush Kyla – Carlos Nahue Macey – Rocio Casati Maxwell – Charles Corrello Molly - Mauri Valmor Ferreira Montana – Christopher Bartlett Page – Jamie Taylor Pasha – William Kenneth Fields Princess – George Davis Quiche – Senora Clifton Rookie – Federico Vasquez Sadie – Heather Villegas Sage – Alexandre Raztki Scout – Arthur Christopher Seattle – Steven Hairsine Sheena – Archie Smith Sport – Franco Martinez Sugar – Danielle West Teddy – Macaryn Biggers Tess – Lilia Gonzalez Wallace – Phillip Price Wally – Joseph Nessinger Webster – Julian Martin Gomez Leader Dogs Deceased Abby – Sharon Hawkinson Baker – Zita Miglioranza Bobbie – Lynda Vanlandyut-Tackitt Briggs – Jeremy Gilley Cole – Sarah Hunt CJ – Doris Bryant Denise – Illene Goldman Sawyer Deuce - Janice Six Dixie – Humberto Bustillos Duke – Zacarias Hernandez Palafox Eddie – Jay Miller Gabby – Sharon Peterson Gus – Rodney Barkley Heather – Alice Massa Jack – Enrique Sanchez Guijo Acevedo Jack – Shane Nelson Maxwell – Richard Benac Milo - Daniel Owens Moses – Tambor Haven Murdock – Andrea Fuentes Nalla – Rill Mis Nell – Lewis Rolph Riley – Charles Giblin Ripley – Steven Johnson Sable – Jesus Hernandez Cabezon Skyler – James Todd Summer – Jackie Schoff Sunny – Michelle Sorce Tilley – Patricia Hughes Toby – Joseph Hintz Venture – Monica Thibodeaux Yanni – Susan Peak Zaria – Debra Streeter Zeb – Arturo Agabo Garcia Classes Class 10-11 Apprentice Instructor Susan Hackman; Shelley McMullen and "Bailey" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Randy Hockey); Steven Hairsine and "Iowa" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raisers: James Nott and Douglas Howard); Katherine Paulk and "Gemma" Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Kristin Hadacz); Sharon Schneider and "Jola" German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Elaine Borning) Instructor Laura Burke; Jo Ann Vanderzee and "Ziva" Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Carole Power); James Rhoades and "Carson" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Katie Krueger); Antoinette Huling; William Neff and "Hank" Black Lab (Puppy Raisers: Charles and Connnie Brach); Michael Birenbaum and "Levi" German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Amy Stearns) Instructor Kevin Ihrke; Daniel Avitia and "Wrigley" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raisers: David and Karen Kortebein); Bret Reed and "Charlie" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Cathy Tucker); Connie Bowman and "Friday" Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Margaret McLaughlin); Thomas Dockham and "Bubba" Black Lab (Puppy Raisers: Michael and Amy Goggins) Apprentice Instructor Denise Atler; Interpreter Paulina LaFontaine; Ramon Olivares and "Jacob" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Marchelle D'Anna); Fernando Paez and "Tank" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Johnny Ollin); Alvaro Ganduglia de Vida and "Rocky" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Eric Eder); Roberto Jaramillo and "Basil" Black Lab (Puppy Raisers: Sarah and Heather Duyck) Class 10-12 Instructor Jamie Togal; Joyce Smith and "Gavin" Golden Retriever/German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Diane Stanton); Kenneth Clark and "Batman" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Mary Beth Halushka) Instructor Debbie Komondy; Eric Davis and "Payton" German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Sarah Crawford); Scott Gilbertson and "Buddy" Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Jocelyn Robinson); Beth Anderson and "Ella" German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Molly Buis) Stephanie Woods and "Joey" Golden Retriever/Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Julianne Wierzchowski); Cory Lipsett and "Ragin" German shepherd (Puppy Raisers: Dan and Kathleen Oberst); Deborah Guice and "Leroy" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Daniel Evola); John Fritz and “Mack” Yellow Lab (donated); Apprentice Instructor Paul Meister not pictured Apprentice Instructor Allison Roberts; Albert McGinnis; Paige Leonhardy and "Kylee" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Julie Ann Johnson); Nick Vanderwall and "Toby" Golden Retriever/Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Jennifer Brewer); Sabrina Bridges and "Addy" Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Carol McEllhiney-Luster) Home Delivery: Thomas Moritz and “Fernie” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Ginger and Glenn Rossow) Home Delivery: Patricia Greenburg and “Kela” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Kristin Hadacz) Class 11-01 Instructor Anna Williams; Pierre Berube and “Smoke” German Shepherd/Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Jean Pensis); Lisa Kellerman and “Bella” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raisers: Ann and Ron Bowman) Instructor Katie Stamm; Joseph Scgalski and “Midnight” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Ron Croft); Annette Bateman and “Stanley” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Mike and Brenda Lasecki); Lynda Gochenouer and “Sparkle” German Shepherd/Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Judith Robbins); Phillip Price and “Ice” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Pat Boyd) Instructor Linda Fisher; Brandy Erickson and “Pepper” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Dyanne Sanders); Jessie Fouts and “Angel” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Linda Wiedewitsch); Amber Broad and “Zoe” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Sandy Arnott) Instructor Rei Chang; Yu-Hao Wu and “Deke” Black Lab (Puppy Raisers: Victoria Kalmanek and Michael Agnello) Instructor Anna Williams; Connie Gephardt and “Mason” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Jill Moore); Christian Puett and “Broadway” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Douglas Vought) Class 11-02 Instructor Dave Heins; Richard Zambrano and “Tanner” Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Kathleen Davis); Ruth Ferry and “Lena” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Pamela Stamm); Daniel Tonge and “Sadie” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Roxanne Minor); Freddie Flores and “Zoe” Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Ron Schmaeman) Instructor Dave Heins; Timothy Kilburn and “Sully” Golden Retriever (Puppy Raiser: Sherrill Platt); Jane Leeds and “Phoenix” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Eric Cloude); Angela Gibson and “Chester” German Shepherd (Puppy Raiser: Victoria Wibright); Jonathan Dixon and “Grace” Yellow Lab (Puppy Raiser: Bruce Hundley) Instructor Keith McGregor; Apprentice Instructor Jenny Sanderson; Brittany Sikorski and “Tarbah” Black Lab (Puppy Raisers: Karen West and Ernie Schmatz); Catalina Acevedo and “Jiffy” Golden Retriever (Puppy Raisers: Jay Miller and Carolyn Shedlock) Home Delivery: Mary Ann Rector and “Ahksan” Black Lab (Puppy Raiser: Sheila Sosnowski) Questions, Comments or Suggestions If you have any questions, comments or suggestions for this publication, please send them to Amy Bordo at UpdateEditor@leaderdog.org or call 888-777-5332. Stay Connected Become a fan of Leader Dogs for the Blind by visiting our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Leader-Dogs- for-the-Blind/13251298666?v=info. Keep in touch with us on Flickr by visiting our photo stream at http://www.flickr.com/photos/leaderdog/. Student Services Contacts If you need to speak with someone at Leader Dog for any reason, please feel free to contact your student services coordinator. You can reach your coordinator by calling 888-777-5332. Carol Macey ext. 2050 – Last names A-F Stephanie Steele ext. 1160 – Last names G-N Barb Upmeyer ext. 1104 – Last names O-Z If you have general comments, please feel free to contact Stacy Benmark at 888-777-5332 ext. 1105 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The mission of Leader Dogs for the Blind is to enhance the lives of people who are blind and visually impaired.