Friday, April 29, 2011

Jetta's Birthday Party, Chapter 15

Pictures of Party Girl Jetta. Handsome Mike, one of her friends, is feeding her treats. Look at chapter 15 and blog back to me about dog parties for your dogs. You should try it, it's fun.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Young Jetta Taking a Break from Training

Practice, practice, practice. That's what the trainer Mette says and does. Here is Jetta taking a break from training. Happy dreams, little training dog. In Jetta's story, she's always training, training, training. You can read about it in her book. If you make a comment to me about any training problems, I can try to help you out with ideas, and I can go to my resources, like trainers.

Friday, April 22, 2011

A Hard Day's Work

This is a chapter from Bud's book in progress. He's 3 years old. Everything has to be true, so the dogs have to do these things before I write the stories.

A Hard Day’s Work

Mom tells me that on the days I must work, we will play first. She knows I worry that I won’t get my fun time, because I am such a serious hard worker for her. We take old Jetta with us for a walk on the beach with Charlie. Mom walks slowly with Jetta, and I walk next to Charlie, so he can throw and kick the ball for me as we go.
Mom says, “Jetta still likes the beach and needs her kind of fun everyday, too.”
Retired service dogs get lonely sometimes, so we will take Jetta with us to the pool after we walk.
Charlie helps Jetta out of the car at the pool parking lot. We go down the ramp to the pool. Jetta finds a spot to lie down for the duration of Mom’s swim. She always looks around for robes with biscuits in the pockets; That girl is always hungry. The aquanetics people love her and miss her when she’s not here.
I walk with Mom to her lane and the lifeguard gets a kickboard for her. She starts swimming back and forth, back and forth. I walk back and forth with her on the edge of the pool because I’m her service dog and I must be ready to help her if she needs me. This is a very serious job I have. I finally get tired and sit at the end of her lane. I know when she is ready to get out, she will go to the ladder. I will wait for her there. Mom turns at the end of the pool and says, “Hi, Bud.” I lick her face to let her know Bud’s on the job.
Good. She’s getting out. I hope it’s playtime now. I stand by the ladder with the lifeguard, to help her get out if she needs me. I watch her like a hawk; this wet slippery stuff can be dangerous. I don’t want her to get hurt. It’s a big responsibility.
No. She heads to the warm pool for aquanetics. She’s a water baby. I wish I could be in there with her. I tried once, but they laughed and made me get out. Everybody says to me, “Oh Bud. I remember when you were just a baby, Jetta taught you well. Remember the time you jumped in the pool and we laughed and they made you get out?”
I watch by the warm pool next to her walker and towel, waiting for Mom to get out. Jetta gets up and walks over to the pool. She still knows exactly how long Mom will swim. She did this job for so long, that she knows when it has been exactly an hour and a half. I need recess. When I get in the car, I get time for a power nap on the way home. I just have to close my eyes.
When we arrive, we leave Jetta at home and head for an errand in town.—a double-header, two jobs in one day. I should have eaten a power bar. Mom, do you have one for me? We arrive at the dentist’s office, a place Jetta has been often, but not me.
“Oh, you have a new dog,” the receptionist says. “How’s Jetta?”
Mom says, “We have her book with us.”
“Good. We’ll take one for our waiting room. The other patients can read about her life as a service dog,” she says.
Everybody loves Jetta. I love her, too. But she thinks I’m a knucklehead sometimes when I bug her.
Mom says, “Bud is writing his own book.”
A girl comes to get Mom. We have to leave the walker in the hallway because it is so narrow. It is up to me now. I’ll keep you safe, Mom. I’m on duty.
Another girl passes by and says, “What a good looking dog!”
I look forward and down and stay focused. I’m working. I can’t respond.
Inside the exam room, Mom lies on a big chair with bright lights and big machines hanging down.
Mom says, “Come around. Go to bed.” She points to the spot where I should lie down and wait. I’m a good boy and wait and watch quietly. I stand up and whimper because I hear a high noise I don’t like.
Mom asks, “Is that hurting your ears, Honey?”
I just want out of here. I scoot up and walk around her to wait in the hallway right by the door so I don’t have to hear that noise. This is better. My ears hurt from that terrible sound. I will lie here and be a good boy. I can still see Mom in the special chair from here.
I wonder what Charlie is doing? He drove us here. I see him in the waiting room down the hall. I go to him. Can we go play with the ball? I’ve been working a long time.
“What are you doing here, Bud?” he says. “Go back to Mom.”
It seems like hours and hours to me. When is playtime?
I go back to my spot outside Mom’s door just in time to help her walk back to the car.
Mom says, “Thank you, Bud, You are such a good helper.”
I get in the backseat. I just need a power nap. That was hard work. It’s been a long day. It’s dinnertime, too. Let’s go home.

Visit to Luke

Visit To Luke (Chapter 8)

This picture is of Jetta and Luke as one-year-olds. In this chapter the two young dogs play together. This is a picture of them playing at the lake. You can find out what adventures these silly pups get into. Read more in Chapter 8 of Jetta’s Journey. You can tell me what mischief your pups have gotten into.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Chapter one in Jetta's Journey

In Jetta's book, her story starts when she is only 10 weeks old when she leaves her litter mates to start her life as a Service Dog. The special dog trainer, Mette, and Denise, Jetta's person with a disability that she is being trained for, pick Jetta up. Jetta goes to the trainer's ranch where she has her first adventure in the book. You can read about her days

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Kindness Of Strangers

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Kindness Of Strangers: "I've feeling not my normal 100% for a few days. This a.m. while walking, my body felt as if I was 90 years old. I was walking with my walke..."

Bath Day

Bath day is once a month. Mom says that working dogs have to be clean to be in public working. It wouldn’t be right to have a dirty smelly Service Dog. Jetta in this picture has her special conditioner on for 10 minutes. Bud is hiding in his crate while Jetta is getting her beauty treatment. Bud does not like the beauty treatment. I guess that’s a guy thing.
In Jetta's book, chapter 9, is all about bath time. You can read how dogs feel about baths. I look forward to your comment on how your dogs do with their bath time. Best wishes for you and your day.
Denise and The Pack

Monday, April 18, 2011

Most Asked Questions

Hi. It's Spring Break and kids are off school. I'm posting these again because they are so informative. All of these answers are in the book also. Maybe it's a good time to get and read the book. Reading is important.

What does the dog do for me?

Gets the phone for me, picks up dropped objects like socks, clothing, utensils, pens, eye glasses, keys. The dog walks next to me on a leash without pulling me over. When I’m on the ground, the dog stands still so I can grab his back and dog and use him as a bench.

How long training period?

18 months for full duty, the dog needs their strong bones mature to not hurt them.

When can the dog get pets?

When I take the “Off duty.

When I say the word, “Release” the dog knows they are on a break and I’m not depending on them for support.

How can they get a service dog?

Go to a large group like Canines for Independence or other groups that offer adult service dogs or pick out a calm pup and pay for a dog trainer that specialized in service dogs. The problem with starting with pup is very difficult, you are the puppy raiser and with a disability that is challenging and you won’t know until the dog is going to be a good service dog until well into the second year.

When does the dog get too old to work? What happens then?

That depends on what the dog’s job is. For example Jetta can still come with me to appointments. She walks next to me but not do any of my weight bearing like helping me stand up.Jetta is slowing down and getting tired and loves to work but also is enjoying being lazy. Because Jetta is my dog, she stays with me for the rest of her life. With guide dogs sometimes the person can keep the old dog but sometimes that’s not possible.

Who qualifies for a service dog?

Any one with a disability that doctors note that a service dog would make their life safer.

Types of service dogs
Guide dogs
Seizure dogs
Hearing dogs
Dog for stress disorders
Service dogs for returning Vets with post traumatic stress disorders.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Our Pack

Today at the beach we met tons of kids from our school. The kids were happy to see us. They remembered one of Bud's tricks that he performed in front of the school assembly. This trick is about listening. I put Bud on a "Sit, Stay", then I threw the ball and Bud had to stay there and wait until I said the word "Release." I whispered to the group of kids that word, then I threw the ball and Bud had to listen for that word,"Release," before he ran for the ball. The kids love this. While Bud is on a "Sit and Stay" I say and sing different words trying to trick him. Finally after a minute or so we say the word "Release,"together. After hearing that word, Bud runs and gets the ball, all the kids clap. Bud then struts around proudly for good listening. At these school groups, I tell about different true stories in Jetta's Journey, and I teach the kids about training our dogs as in our families; our Pack. When we left the beach to come home, one little boy said "just blow your whistle then Bud will come". By then Bud found a guy down the beach a ways to throw the ball. I blew my whistle and Bud stopped playing and ran to me. Then I showed them how Bud's job is to help me. I said to Bud the command, "Stand," and Bud stood there to help me stand up from sitting on the sand. The best part of this morning is that the kids want to follow Jetta's blog. I love sharing about my service dogs. The kids are motivated to teach their own dog tricks. Our dogs are our family, they want to be trained. Remember what Jetta and Bud's trainer says, practice, practice,practice. More time spent on your dogs means happy dogs.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Long Tongue Contest

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Long Tongue Contest: "Hi I’m Big Bud Jr. I have a long tongue. People laugh at me when I play and my long tongue hangs out. My tongue is good for kissing. Mom..."

Long Tongue Contest

Hi I’m Big Bud Jr. I have a long tongue. People laugh at me when I play and my long tongue hangs out. My tongue is good for kissing. Mom says I’m the best kisser in the family. Mom says to comment about all your other dog’s tongues.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Nothing Better Than Morning Kisses

My favorite time of day is when I I wake up and get on the floor with my dogs for some loving. I love kissing Jetta's jowls. Bud gets jealous and he joins in the morning ritual. Jetta loves rubs and rolls around with pleasure as she smiles. Bud is the kisser in the family. He moans and gives Jetta little love bites. What a way to start your day. Try this if you don't already do it. It takes 2 minutes to make your dog happy. Even on my busy days I do this. It helps me feel loved.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Kindness Of Strangers

I've feeling not my normal 100% for a few days. This a.m. while walking, my body felt as if I was 90 years old. I was walking with my walker on the way to a good 2 mile walk that I do all the time when the beach is not walkable. I felt like I was walking in slow monition. I hear a voice of a man who was running who I have never seen before,he was most likely tourist, he yells out to me," I'm proud of you,I don't know you, but I'm proud of you." I wanted to cry. How wonderful is that, when people connect with others for good wishes, encouragement, or to say to a friend " I love you. How nice is that? Lets try to say something nice to a stranger. Strangers have help me out bad situations more than once. You actions and words impact people

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Zen Jetta

Jetta's Journey ~ Life and Times of a Service Dog: Zen Jetta: "Jetta is an old dog now and her life has changed since her retirement. Jetta goes in the car with us whenever possible, but she misses a lo..."