Me guide dog Fletcher lying down in my guide dog harness with my mum to the left of the photo. my mum is sitting and she's a black labrador. we're both looking slightly to the right. I'm smiling. Proud moment. @pawsatthekerb

happy 2017 and when I met my mum (reposted)

Woof! I, that’s me guide dog Fletcher, made a slight boo boo. Somehow I managed to delete this post from my blog. It’s an old one. From January 2017. I don’t know how to put it back apart from re-posting it. Brings back memories…

Woof and Happy New Year from me, guide dog Fletcher!

I was up really late and saw in 2017. It was wooftastic. A pawsome photo of me was taken by my human friend, Ness (Ness is nice as she gives me fusses).

Me guide dog Fletcher sat facing you and looking attentive. My fur is golden. And at the top of the photo is written 2017. There's an overlay of multi coloured streamers and hellow confetti. @pawsatthekerb

I was so excited at Christmas to get two new cuddly toys – Barney Bear who is very big and Ragga Reindeer. Oh yes, the photo captures my wide-eyed look. How were your holidays?!

Me guide dog Fletcher head and shoulders. My head's turned towards you and you can see the whites of my eyes. In my mouth is a big brown bear and there's a reindeer toy with a red nose and ears in the background. @pawsattherkerb

Before I tell you about my mum, let me give you a pupdate on how I’m doing. I’m getting better after my surgery and building up my stamina. Still a way to go until I’m 100% fit. I guess the lead up to my surgery took its toll.

You can still see where I was shaved on my back. If you look closely (for those of you who can), you might spot my scar.

Me guide dog Fletcher well my back anyway and a bit of tail. You can just make out that my fur changes colour slightly at my bottom and there's a faint dark line (my scar) in the middle of my back and in the photo's center. @pawsatthekerb

Now my fur might look good to you. But trust me, there’s one fur layer missing on my back. It’s my guard hair. So I’ve reduced coverage for all that wet rain and I’m a bit sensitive to being touched on my back at the moment. My back’s itchy too. Very distracting.

My New Year’s resolution is to get my mojo back and to be a guide dog super star again. My future as a guide dog is still uncertain but there’s hope. I finally got some trainer help on 23 December to get back into the flow of guiding. Puppy paw steps and all that.

Ah that reminds me. I met a very impawtant dog on 30 July 2016 and didn’t get the chance to blog about it (because of all the crap stuff that kicked in after). I met my mum, Jazz, who is a beautiful black Labrador. And yes, there are a few black hairs amongst my golden ones. I also met her woofderful humans, Ginny and Andy.

I got to show off my guide dog uniform too. Here’s my mum and I. Proud moment. This is one of my favourite photos.

Me guide dog Fletcher lying down in my guide dog harness with my mum to the left of the photo. my mum is sitting and she's a black labrador. we're both looking slightly to the right. I'm smiling. Proud moment. @pawsatthekerb

Mum and I had a lot of fun. Running around and playing with each other. More so than we’ve done with any other dog. Quite a lot of mouthing too.

Me guide dog Fletcher playing with my mum. We're mouthing each other. We were gentle. My mum is a black lab and she's on the left. I'm on the right and golden in colour. It looks as if we have our lower jaws in each other's mouths. @pawsatthekerb

It’s been a very long time since we last saw each other. Over 2.5 years. The humans thought we might not know each other. But of course I’d know my mum anywhere. She’s very good at playing tug!

Me guide dog Fletcher an amongst three year old golden retriever labrador cross playing tug with my mum a black labrador. I'm on the left with my mum on the right witha duck cuddly toy being torn apart between us. @pawsatthekerb

I was a bit naughty though. I didn’t let go off the duck toy during tug. Nor did mum. So the duck toy got pulled apart. Woofy woopsie. Hope I didn’t wear out my mum. She’s now retired.

Whilst I’ve already told you a lot about me (see my “about me” and “list of posts” blog pages), I found out a lot from my mum and her humans. (By the way, her humans are also known as retired Brood Bitch Holders (BBH). My human, the fabulous Fiona, is called a guide dog owner (GDO). Why humans make life complicated with all their funny letters, I don’t know).

I found out things like my early weight. At the Guide Dog National Breeding Centre, where I was born in October 2013, I was the lightest in my litter at 0.43kg alongside two of my siblings. When I left my mum to go and live with my puppy walker, I was 2.78kg and the lightest in my litter (oh, in case you’re wondering I am now around 31-32kg). Here’s my puppy weight sheet and I’ve blanked off my siblings’ weights (data protection and all that):

Puppy weight sheet for me guide dog Fletcher and my litter. My siblings' details have been blanked off. In the table are my weights starting at my birth weight of 0.43kg, then at 3 days, 1 week and weekly intervals to 6 weeks. @pawsatthekerb

And yes, I was adorable when I was a puppy. Cue cute photos of me with my 6 brothers and 1 sister: Stanley (the eldest), Ursula, Usher, Umber, Ulan, Urwin and Uska. Can you spot me? I have a bit of nail polish on my right fore leg; carefully placed bits of nail polish are used to identify us from each other.

Me guide dog Fletcher as a puppy snoozing. No change there then. In amongst my litter siblings. We're all snuggled up against each other and it's quite difficult to tell us apart. @pawsatthekerb

And here we all are with our mum, Jazz. Feeding time. Yay, my favourite time of day.

Me guide dog Fletcher as a puppy with my brothers, sister and mum. All bar one of us are tucking into mum's milk. We're golden in colour. Mum is a black lab. @pawsatthekerb

Ok. Just one more photo of all of us.

Me guide dog Fletcher when I was a puppy. All eight of my golden siblings are lined up facing the camera leaning on the side of a box with a cuddly toy in the background. @pawsatthekerb

A big thank you to my mum’s humans and to all of you who volunteer with Guide Dogs especially those of you who look after us when we’re puppies.

Now I’m a very lucky guide dog. My human has tracked down many of my pawsome guide dog family (I didn’t come with that info). They are my sponsors Alan Fletcher and Swindon Guide Dogs Fundraisers (who I’ve met briefly and I’ll blog about later), my mum Jazz, my Golden Retriever dad Archie, my puppy walker Di, my boarder Cressi and my guide dog brother Umber (Umber and I had fun campaigning for Access All Areas). Who knows who’ll I’ll meet in 2017…

Woof and paw, Guide dog Fletcher.

P.S. As always, your pawsome comments are most welcome. May 2017 bring you much joy. And success in achieving your New Year’s resolutions. Paws crossed I achieve mine. Wish me luck…

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(c) pawsatthekerb™, January 2017. Reposted December 2017.

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GuideDogFletcher

Guide dog Fletcher here, sniffing out the best news from the streets and grass in the UK and beyond. Keeping my human, Fiona, safe with paws at the kerb. Qualified with #guidedogs in August 2015. Can be found at the kerb or snoozing...

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