Saturday, January 26, 2013

Patience & Education: Tasks of the Service Dog Team

The Service Dog and everyone around them must approach each day with patience.
“Patience. Mom what exactly is patience?”
“Oh hello Goodee the Service Dog. Welcome to the Blog.”
“For the Service Dog Team patience means remembering that people don’t always understand what a service dog is, and the special things you need to do when you see a Service Dog.”
“Oh you mean the things you do when your nice to people that are touching me and talking to me but, totally ignoring you when you are trying to transact business.”
“Exactly Goodee, that’s patience when you understand that a person didn’t mean you any harm.”
“Oh that, I get tired of doing that. ..
Couldn’t we just call people stupid and be done with it”
“Well, Goodee people do act careless and without intelligence, but I think we should try to educate them before we just blurt out the word stupid.”
“Yes mom but, people do the same thing day after day “
“I know we get tired Goodee but we just have to find ways to educate people. There’s lots of Service Dogs around but even more people and pets. We have to show people how Service Dogs are different from the  pets they love.”
“Mom how do we explain things to people in ways they will understand.”
“Well I’m not sure Goodee. Do you have ideas?”
“I like scratch and sniff books myself mom.”
“Good idea Goodee. Let’s see we could show people how you help me with migraines by including triggers that set my migraines in motion.”
“Well mom we could include: coffee, perfume, milk, and processed sugar but there is no smell for artificial light.”
“Right Goodee, there’s no way we could explain everything by smell but we could try to produce a bright noisy image that illustrates what it’s like to have a migraine.”
“Could we get someone else to do that for us mom? We have enough migraines of our own without having to create an extra one.”
“Good idea Goodee. We will contract that out.”
“If we are going to educate people mom, we need to make sure they understand how Service Dogs work.”
“Yes Goodee we would want to tell people that each Service Dog is different that’s why it’s so important to leave them alone and let them work.”
“Right mom, sometimes people just don’t understand that I Goodee the Service dog  am ALWAYS WORKING.”
“Goodee, what do you mean ALWAYS?”
“Oh mom, do I have to educate you too? I mean: always, without ceasing, until otherwise stated, perpetually…”
“I understand ALWAYS, Goodee, what do you mean WORKING?”
“Mom can you stand on hard surfaces without me?”
“Not very well.”
“Do you need me to help you after you’ve been sitting a long time?”
“Yes Goodee you help when my muscles get stiff.”
“Can you stop quickly or go around things quickly without me?”
“No Goodee, I would fall without you.”
“Yes and I help you up when you fall!”
“I get it now Goodee we really need to explain to people what WORK means because it’s hard to understand.”
“Right mom, when people see a Service Dog walking, laying or sitting it may not look like WORK but it is!
“Your right Goodee”
“Well education doesn’t end there mom.”
“What else is there to understand Goodee? I get it a SERVICE DOG IS ALWAYS WORKING!”
“Yes, mom but we would also need to explain why people should not talk or touch a Service Dog unless they have gotten permission from the owner.”
“What happens when people touch you Goodee?”
“Well usually you go tumbling to the floor mom.”
“What happens when people talk to you Goodee?”
“Well mom usually they are saying something silly. I try to ignore them but they continue to say silly stuff. Many times they will go get more people and stand right in front of me. I don’t think people mean to be rude mom, but they often block our way until I show them some attention.”
“Oh, what happens when people just insist upon having your attention Goodee?”
“Well usually it means I have to stop what I’m doing for you. This causes you to fall and twist or slam your body parts.  You usually need medical attention. It’s not a pretty sight mom.”
“Oh wow, you mean all these bad things happen to me just because someone one wants to have your attention?”
“Right mom.”
“Thanks for sharing all this stuff with me Goodee”
“No problem I don’t mind finishing the Blog for you.
We welcome feedback by email.
When you see us out and about we often must say,
“Not Now We Are Working!”
GoodeeWorks Productions
DD & GOODEE the Service Dog wish to remind everyone our friend Teddy (age 9) suffers from life-threatening tree nut allergies. Lucy the labradoodle is currently in training to keep Teddy away from harm and carry his needed medical supplies.
Service Dog training is expensive. Your support is appreciated:
Donations can be made directly to Angel Service Dogs:
Mark your payment “Training for Lucy”__________________________