Astro and Andy have been a big part of my life, helping me maintain independence while managing my disability.
Astro, my 12+ year old black and white border collie, was my first service dog. He’s partially retired now as my service dog. He stands in for Andy from time to time when Andy needs a break. Astro and I do still compete in agility in the North American Dog Agility Council where Astro is an elite veteran competitor. Even after all these years I learn new things about communication and leadership every time we work together.
Andy is a three-year-old mixed breed, or All American, as they say. If you’re wondering why he’s short and long, well, there’s a bit of basset hound in there. I adopted Andy when he was 8 weeks old from ACPS in Jacksonville, Florida, I fostered part of his litter, which had been abandoned. Andy, right from the start, showed the temperament needed for service dog work (although his agility skills have been harder to develop), and it was just about time to start training Astro’s successor. Andy has a big personality and is the biggest social butterfly out there (I wonder where he gets that from?).