Meet the Raiser – Rick Eifler
Name: Rick Eifler
Current Pup: Mikey, 2 mo old
How long have you been a Puppy Raiser and how many dogs have you raised? (Include furloughed dogs and the one you are currently raising).
I have been a full-time raiser since December 2019 when I started raising Florence. She was with us for a little over a year before moving on to the prison training program. Mikey is my second service puppy.
What led you to Puppy Raising?
I work for myself, and I was looking for something new to do in my semi-retirement that would make a difference. I heard about NEADS, went to an open house, and thought puppy raising might be something I would be good at. Maybe a little more of a time commitment than I was originally thinking, but who can resist puppies?
If you had your own talk show, who would your first 3 guests be?
First of all, this would never happen – I’m way too introverted. But if it did, my talk show would be with mystery writers, starting with three great writers who can also be very funny: Jussi Adler-Olsen, Karin Slaughter and Lisa Lutz.
If you had one extra hour of free time a day what would you do with it?
On a good day, I would sit down with a cup of coffee and work on a puzzle, but most days I would probably use the hour to do the things I was supposed to get to that day but didn’t.
Would you rather be able to speak all foreign languages or talk to animals?
Definitely talk to animals – so many questions. What’s wrong? What were you thinking? Where did you leave your tennis ball? Where did I leave my glasses? What were you just dreaming about? What do you want to do this weekend? Did you just swallow something?
If you could visit one place in the world where would it be and why?
London, England – to stay in historic hotels, inns and cottages, and visit historic palaces, mansions, houses, gardens and museums.
Are you a listener or a talker?
I’m not a talker. I’m a pretty good listener. But I’m really more of a doer.
Tell us your favorite part about being a Puppy Raiser and/or your favorite memory with one of the NEADS pups.
Favorite part – field trips. So many people are so impressed with the NEADS dogs. It creates a huge sense of accomplishment to take a dog to a place they are not typically allowed and have them behave so well.
Favorite memory – on one trip to Boston’s Seaport District, we took Florence to an outdoor restaurant. At the end of the meal, as we were paying our bill, the waiter finally noticed we had a service dog with us! In his defense, Florence was really good the whole time, but I don’t know how he missed the bright yellow travel water dish.