GREAT FALLS — The Big Sky chapter of Canine Companions for Independence (CCI), an organization devoted to training service dogs that can be gifted to disabled owners, welcomed three puppies at Great Falls International Airport on Tuesday; the puppies came from Santa Rosa, California.
Chapter president Kim Monroe says it's hard giving them up once they are trained, but they go on to help others: "When we give them up, it's hard, it's like sending your child off to college. It's the best way I can tell somebody we love them. We prepare them for that adventure, that next step to their journey that they are going to take. They are all happy dogs when they walk away; they walk with their heads held high and tails wagging, and they become someone else's miracle."
Monroe also explained that being a puppy-raiser can be a rewarding opportunity: "Being a puppy raiser is one of the most rewarding volunteer opportunities that you will have. And not only do you get to raise a great puppy, but you also get to be part of a great community of people who want to make a difference in the world. And you can make a difference right here in your community, you know, in your state. I always say that when we send our puppies away, we send a piece of our heart, you know, but they leave a part of theirs, and it's beautiful."
CCI posted on its Facebook page:
- Due to the COVID19 pandemic, Canine Companions has been unable to ship puppies to their puppy raisers via commercial airlines! Today, three Great Falls puppy raisers welcomed puppies Lorelei, Ludo, and Loxley into their homes through the hard work of the Canine Companions for Independence volunteer network and volunteer pilot, Jeff Stewart who made a special trip on his private aircraft to deliver this precious cargo!