Happy 10th Anniversary, Usha!

Our wonderful chocolate lab, Usha, has been delighting our customers for ten years now.

Having any employee celebrate ten years with a company is something special – but when it’s a Gold Star Customer Service dog like Usha – well now!

On September 16, 2013 then 10-week-old Usha started her working life. While very much a puppy at home (poor old Duke the golden retriever – he had it tough) she was quite well behaved at work. It took only a couple of days to learn the “Chocolate Drop” that is so hard for humans to ignore. Rolling onto her back with her tail thumping was just irresistible.

In production she was fearless, attacking the vacuum, running across the Friday shelf and biting the compressed air blown from the air guns. As the years passed she’s focused less on protecting us from the machines and more on napping with her teddy bear who is almost as old as she is.

We can be just about to go home and if the showroom bell rings, Usha is right back at work, meeting and greeting. One customer was on the floor with her when the bell went and Usha hopped up to meet the next person. He looked at me and said sadly, “It really wasn’t about me was it?” But for those few moments it was all about him.

In 2014 our production manager decided we should have a customer service rep contest and not being willing to take part myself, he took it upon himself to run the contest and make the award. What a surprise – Usha won! Every year.

While the years have slowed her down a bit they haven’t changed Usha’s enthusiasm for her job. She does have a 3-year-old understudy now though. Lila joined us in December 2021 and while more talkative than Usha would like she is trusted enough to allow for occasional naps.

BTW - Usha means Daughter of Heaven in Sanskrit and was also the name of a beloved Nepalese friend from long ago. She got her middle name from an employee who thought she needed one and she is widely called, "Usha Marie" (we're pretty dog-crazy people).