Yesterday a special dog passed away, just 2 months short of her 14th birthday. Priscilla was born at the Guide Dogs for the Blind in California; one of a litter of pups all named with the letter P. My friend Gail decided that raising a guide dog puppy would be a good community service for her family, and asked Dan and me to help out once in awhile.
So Priscilla spent her young puppy days at the home of Gail, Dan, and their kids to be socialized and learn to be a good dog to be around. Cilla would come to work with Gail, and Dan and I had the privilege to have her under our desks for time to time, and take her to meetings. Many a time Cill made a boring meeting bearable because I could stroke her velvety ears under the table. Priscilla was delighted to go home with me at lunch time as we let her be a dog and play with our Wendy, whom she dearly loved. Priscilla has outlived Wendy by many years.
But time came at about 9 months that Priscilla had to return to the Guide Dog program to become a true guide dog. It was a tough time, especially for Gail and her family, but it was what it was all about: she would aid a blind person in leading an independent life. However, many dogs do not make it into the program for various reasons, and Priscilla was "career changed" because of a possible eye condition of all things. So back it was to Gail and Dan. Happy days.
Now being in Arizona, I think a lot about Priscilla because of Emma who looks much like her, also being a yellow lab. I will continue keeping Cilla in my thoughts as I see Em bounding down the trail with ears aflying. We dedicated this morning's hike to Priscilla. Here she is in Oregon snow, last year.