Leader Dog Jetta

Leader Dog Jetta (Retired guide dog).
Worked from July 03 2002 until August 2008.

About Jetta.
-Breed: black labrador
-Weight: 53 pounds
-Birthday: December 07 2000
-Dame: Jet (black labrador),
-Sire: Magic (yellow labrador), both parents were Leader Dogs for the Blind breeding stock.

Jetta's Nicknames (and there were many).
-Jetta the Jitter Bug (because she never sat still. I think that is why we were matched so well),
-Miss Moo (because she always ate grass),
-Turkey (Tenie named her that and I don't know why),
-Moo Face/Bum,
-Muffin Face/Bum (apparently we have a thing for faces or bums),
-Jingle Jetta (because her tags and large link choke collar made a lot of noise),
Homer (another Tenie invention).

Jetta's Favourites.
-Climbing into bed and curling up against my back when she thought I was asleep
-Stealing my lip gloss/chap stick/lipstick and eating it
--Running free (her recall was terrible).
-Running fast (we could never catch her).
-Food time (I had to learn to spell it backwards so she didn't know I was saying Supper).
-Fresh Nylabones (once they were a bit chewed, she lost interest).
Working (mostly if we were going to the park or pet store).

Jetta's Dislikes.
-When I got out the suitcase (usually meant we were going on a swim competition).
-Being cuddled (she would cuddle you, but you better not dare cuddle her).
-Shopping (she pooped in the mall twice the first two months I had her. I was sooooooooo embarrassed).
-Her winter boots (if I put them on her, she would walk me dangerously close to walls on the university campus in protest).

Jetta's Quote: "Cookies!!!!!!!"

Jetta was my first guide dog and she retired when she was seven and a half. That is quite young for a guide dog, but she had a busy life with guiding me around the university campus and all over the world for swim competitions. I think she just finally had enough and retired herself. I knew she was done when she stopped one day and sat down in harness. She had also been making silly mistakes, like taking me into the grass instead of up on to the curb when crossing streets. So, in typical Jetta style, she told me when she was done and I am glad she did.
Our beginning was a bit rocky. I was barely 19 and she was not quite ready to leave the program, but they didn't have anyone else who would match me. So, we grew together and became an amazing working team; with a lot of patience from both of us. I love that dog with all of my heart and will always remember her crazy ways. Whenever we got home from working, she would wait for her harness to come off then run as fast as she could around the living room. She bounced from couch to couch with no regard for any human sitting there. I always had to warn my roommates so they would either move, or put their arms up in protection. :)
We had many travels together; all over Canada and the United States. She even accompanied me to Greece, Denmark and Belgium for swimming competitions. I made my first trip with only Jetta up to White Horse Canada for an athletes' conference. She never ceased to amaze me-she memorized our hotel room and was able to even find specific people I had told her to find. She could even find my bag in the change room for me if someone moved it-I have no idea how she did this. We used to joke that she only found it because it meant she got out of the pool faster.
I would never have been as successful as I was at that conference, or in a lot of my other life adventures, without her.
Jetta is now happily retired and living with my parents, their dog Flash and my cats that they took on after I met Mr. K and realized he was deathly allergic to them. I miss her little snorting, wagging self and think of her every day, but know that she is happy and well loved there. She turned ten this past December and hasn't slowed down a bit.