I can hardly believe it. My big Yellow Fellow is sort of middle aged. That means, we've been together for almost four years. I am not sure where the time has gone, but I couldn't ask for a better dog.
I'm sure every dog owner says that about his/her dog, but, for me, Glacier is my guy. We've been through so much and I just feel now that I'm really getting to know him. He's such a happy, goofy guy and I am so lucky that we were matched three and a half years ago.
I'm not sure what he was like as a puppy. I only have one photo of him, which I've shared with you, when he was a baby. I know his puppy raiser was a teacher and Glacier was read to by the children at "circle time." Other than that, I don't know much else, but I bet he was adorable; all paws and head.
Today has been a bit slow for him as Mr. K and I have been fighting or are finishing up with the stomach flu, and it was one of the most horrible stomach flus!
His morning started off by Glacier having half of a banana in his breakfast, and he and I worked our way to the grocery store to get apple juice for Mr. K and then on to the pet store, where we bought puppy pads and a few edible chew treats for he, Roscoe and Hermione to have later. He is now snuggled up with Roscoe, having a well deserved nap.
The funny thing is, I don't think he would spend his birthday any other way. He loves to work and he was excited to go to the pet store of course. The clerk gave him a huge biscuit because it was his birthday, and you can never go wrong with Labs and food. He knows there is a treat tucked away in the drawer for him as well. He also is best friends with Roscoe and I think that if he could choose, Roscoe would definitely be a part of his day.
Tomorrow, weather permitting, Tenie, Carmen and I are taking the dogs on an outing back to the North Sea so that they can have a good run; another part of Glacier's birthday present. Besides working, I know a crazy, all out, zoomies on the beach would be the best gift for him. People have teased me in the past about birthday parties for dogs and presents, but I figure that he works so hard for me that he deserves a day or two all about him.
I also think a good free run will help him forget Hermione's moved in. ;)
In closing, since it is Glacier's fifth birthday, I will leave you with five fun facts about Glacier; in typical blogging fashion. :)
1. Glacier likes to use his paws. I don't mean just a little high five here and there. Oh no. Mr. G uses his feet all of the time. Once we were out working with Cessna from Ruled by Paws and both dogs were in a "sit stay" in harness, minding their own business. Well, at least Cessna was minding her own business. I felt Glacier shift and I reached over to check what he was doing, only to find him with his paw resting on her head; kind of like when very tall people use shorter people for leaning poles. He also uses his paws to hold your arm still so he can give you a bath and will often use his paws to gently whack anything that may be annoying him.
2. Glacier doesn't bark. Okay, perhaps he barks, but in the three and a half years I have had him, I have heard him bark a total of six or seven times. Each time it is just one, gigantic, "woof." I've heard him use his very big voice wen telling Hermione to please stop nipping his toes. He didn't growl or snarl, just one huge warning "woof." I've also heard him bark once when playing with Mr. K and we haven't been able to replicate it. He's just a guy of few words, I suppose.
4. Glacier has zero prey drive. Guide dogs are required to have a very low one, but I don't think Glacier has a hunting bone in his body. If he sees a cat, he just wants to stroll around with it; he completely ignores squirrels/chipmunks; and doesn't even flinch when the pigeons fly up only two feet from his face. The only thing I've seen him want to chase, besides Roscoe during zoomies, was a frog. We were out for a walk on a bike path and a little frog hopped out in front of us. Glacier had been guiding me along, ignoring all manner of creatures, and so I was startled when he tried hopping off after it. He doesn't even try to chase the Sugar Gliders when they are out, roaming our living room. He just wants to follow Fiona around, like they are best buds.
5. Glacier is a great snuggler. I can sit in front of him on the floor, and he will drop his head down and push the back of it into my chest. We can sit like that for a very long time. He will also rest his chin on my shoulder and start to fall asleep when I'm sitting down in front of him. When he is asked up into my bed, he will lay with his back pressed up against me, stretched out to his full length. When he knows you are sad or sick, he just wants to lie on your feet. I remember when we were at Leader Dogs for the Blind, I was having a particularly rough day and I went into one of the bathrooms at our downtown working centre to cry. He looked up at me and instantly started slurping my face and even though I was still frustrated, I didn't need to cry anymore. He's a lover, not a fighter. :)
So, here's to you, Mr. G. Let the next five years of your life be as happy as your first.