Puppy Pop Quiz

Sugar and spice…and everything nice.

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Except the poop. Puppies are adorable.

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It is hard not to fall in love with each and every one. But matching the right puppy to the right family makes all the difference for dog and human.

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Our latest brood was delivered by Lady Edith. She has gone to her new family and will have her long-awaited eye surgery this week.

Her pups are all spoken for; their anxious families wait. But before we send them home, we wanted to complete their puppy assessments using the Puppy Aptitude Test developed by Jack and Wendy Volhard.

Each litter we are graced with is assigned a human “mom” who watches over them, cleans up after them, and most importantly, socializes them – so critical in a dog’s early weeks. This time, the honors fell to Judy.


The test assesses personality and temperament, which will help their new families provide the environment and nurturing they need to be well-raised dogs. This is not a pass or fail test  – and no – you cannot cheat off the teacher, either!

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It measures social attraction to dogs and people,

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confidence, dependence or independence,

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willingness to accept commands or follow,

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retriever instincts and prey drive,

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touch, sight and sound sensitivity.

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Born during a thunderstorm, raised by a good mama dog and devoted human, our pups are pretty unfazed by loud sounds, sudden movements or being handled. But certain personalities do emerge.

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Puppies with a strong desire to lead or play very rough need experienced dog people with a commitment to training and exercise to bring out their best selves.

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Shy or frightened pups need patient people in environments that are calm and stable.

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Go-along/get-along pups are best suited to first-time dog owners, families with children, or older people.

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And when the test is over…

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everyone gets a well-earned nap!

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Want to learn more about the Puppy Aptitude Test? Visit www.volhard.com.

Back to Reality


Back from an adventurous week on Kauai and returned to a whirlwind of work and house guests. Among them was my sister, Beth and her husband, Gordon. Their stay was brief, but good – with a request to see Homeward Bound and the Memorial Garden which they have known only virtually.


We made our way there Friday, where the garden is beginning to look a lot like summer…

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and the puppies put my sister through her paces. Yes, those are razor sharp puppy teeth hiding behind all that cuteness!


Sunday was puppy aptitude test day,


which apparently involves umbrellas (something we have little need for!) –










and naps! Puppy tests are exhausting!


These little monsters are spoken for, but we have three remaining from the litter that was left in a box and delivered to our door. They are adorable 100% mix-breed, nine-week old pups named after the Lion King characters. Mufasa:




And Rafiki.


Other guests included Allie, a rescue, who is about to be enrolled as a therapy dog for our local Lend A Heart organization…

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And Sedona, the Homeward Bound alum of Martha and Randy.


Needless to say, I got little work done – which is just my speed right now! I’ll be back to my old self soon (I think). I may even sneak in a few more pictures from Kauai if you’ll indulge me. Until then … mahalo. It’s good to be back in the garden.