Well, yesterday was our month anniversary. Since I won't get to celebrate a year of being together with this pup, I thought I would take it month for month.
I knew when I agreed to take Hilly that I wouldn't have her for more than 2 1/2 months. I knew she'd either be going back to the campus for formal training at the beginning of September or she would have decided she didn't want to be a Guide by late August. Either way, I knew that she and I wouldn't spend all that much time together. With that in mind, I didn't think I would fall in love with her. I knew that I would love her (she's Freya's half sister so there's no way I couldn't love her), but I didn't think I would love her this much. But I do. I absolutely love the way she wiggles with her happy ears in the morning, the way she looks at me when she's trying so hard to be good, and the way she rolls on her back, jumps up straight in the air, and fluffs her pillow when she's excited.
I've seen so much improvement with Hilly over the past month regarding her dog distractions. At first, I'll be completely honest, I didn't think she could do it. My goal was to get her on a recall list, but I was fairly certain I would fail that goal. She was so bad when it came to other dogs. She'd hackle and whine and paw and lunge and, in general, go nuts. And what's worse is that she was stimulated easily so if there were noises or a strong wind or breeze going at the same time as she saw the other dog she'd be near impossible to control. Now, she's like a whole new dog. For a while there we would go off to the side and sit while the dogs passed us on our morning walks. Now we at the point where we can walk by dogs walking towards us without too many issues. She doesn't paw anymore or lunge. She does sometimes pull towards the other dog, but it's never jumping towards them anymore. About two weeks into our month together I thought I could get her on a recall list, but I wasn't sure if she'd make it very far in her training. Now, I'm almost positive that she'll make it to a graduation in harness. I've got at least another whole month with her, so she'll continue to improve and by the time she goes back in for training I'll be absolutely confident that she'll make me proud.