The Daily Spike: Service puppies take the spotlight in ‘Pick of the Litter’


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My good good friend Shannon Bream watched a brand new “dogumentary” final week known as “Choose of the Litter” and beloved it. The film is all about elevating service puppies, so it was actually on my radar. I’d been pushing aside seeing it, figuring out it will be an emotional expertise. However after Shannon’s prodding, Spike and I sat down to observe.

First off, there isn’t any doubt that that is Spike’s favourite film. He sat and watched the entire thing, fully spellbound by the puppies on the display. It was higher than “Cats”!

The movie follows 5 puppies from the identical litter which are being raised to be Information Canine for the Blind. They’ve an identical program as Spike’s group — Canine Companions for Independence — in that volunteers handle the canines for the primary year-plus of their lives educating primary coaching and social abilities. The canines are then given again to the group to allow them to undergo superior coaching (“school”) at campus headquarters.


Like Canine Companions, not all the canines graduate. Some are “career-changed,” which may be heartbreaking for the puppy-raiser who has invested a lot love and time with the pet. However some canines simply wish to be canines, and that’s OK. Nonetheless, I knew these can be the toughest components to observe.

The lives of those puppies generally took gut-wrenching twists and turns, because the film actually will get into the heads of everybody invested in these pups — from the volunteer raisers, to the group’s oversight and coaching groups, to the people who find themselves visually impaired and ready for his or her information canine.

I may relate to a number of the experiences of the raisers. Assembly Spike for the primary time was pure pleasure. He had that new pet scent, and appeared like a child polar bear.


I additionally do not forget that first drive house with him whining within the again seat, after I simply needed him in my lap. Or Spike sleeping on the sofa by his crate for the primary month of burglary (and me getting NO sleep). Or my nervousness about whether or not his coaching is on monitor. (I nonetheless fear about that daily.)

All this stuff had been completely captured within the film. There’s even a graphic within the trailer that reads, “Getting it proper is a matter of life and dying.” As a result of the thought that your pet — your guide-dog-in-training — is a matter of life and dying for another person actually raises the stakes.

The filmmakers did a wonderful job of exhibiting simply how a lot love, effort, and vitality is required to create a superhero. It additionally confirmed the affect that service canines can have on the lifetime of the human to whom it’s matched. It’s an exquisite film about perseverance and pet energy that I extremely advocate.

Two thumbs up from me. And two paws up from Spike, for positive.


For more information in regards to the canines featured in “Choose of the Litter,” go to To be taught extra about Canine Companions for Independence, go to

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