Sunday, April 19, 2009

Oooh, Shiny!

err, um... Golden!

That seems to be a common response of people in public. I've Never had this much attention to a lab in training, or a shepherd for that matter. It's just ridiculous. Eclipse went with Alex and I to Wal-Mart for some things Friday afternoon. We were in the shampoo aisle with five or six other people including two employees and Every single one of them reached out to him. When I told him "leave it" in a serious tone and ignored them they tended to quit but not all of them.

As we were walking back to the back (where we tend to checkout to avoid the major crowds and idiotic drivers) the aisles were big and open as they were switching the aisle displays. Eclipse was wanting to carry the hairspray but it's still a bit big for his little mouth so we saw if he could figure out deodorant. Well, he did! He first grabbed it by the top where the lid has enough of a lip for him to grab and carried it, then switched to the bottom. People were oohing and aahing over him like you would not believe! He had the Best time there though. That's the happiest I've seen him in public since we've been going in public! He also carried our receipt for us. The silly little boy.

I will say, I understand people being excited to see a pup Doing something in public. Yes, there's a local guide dog club. Yes, there's a couple "working" SDs. Yes, there's a few guide dogs. However, rarely, if ever do they see a dog doing Something besides walking (unless people stop and think about it a guide dog in a store holds little interest), sitting, downing, and standing. Joy even said that people tell her that they 'see these dogs all the time but they're never Doing anything'. Which, I completely understand! Yes, guide dogs are out socializing, but that's not really something they can "see" unlike a puppy carrying deodorant through the store /wink/

Saturday Eclipse and Eva got baths before heading to Salem. We meant to have them play in the yard, then get baths, then alternate grooming and walking on the treadmill. However those plans were foiled so they got their baths and groomed then it was time to go. We were on time but ended up getting confused on where we were going so ended up being about 15 minutes late after a quick call from Joy got us straightened out! (Thanks, Joy!)

We then worked on teaching the dogs to pay attention to us and where their bodies are when they're being turned into (helpful for when they work with wheelchairs, they need to be able to spin their butt with the chair). It was hard for me to catch onto as I'm so used to turning Away from the pup when they're pulling but really, turning into them works better for redirecting because turning away simply corrects them and leaves little responsibility on them comparatively. When turning into them you have to be careful to Pivot on your inside foot instead of move it as moving it will make the dog "dance" away from you rather than spin and gets them out of position.

Eclipse did well with this as he already walks very well on a leash (unless in the presence of dogs outside of class) but it took me a bit to get used to turning into him for things like watching other dogs, sniffing the ground, speeding up, etc. He did Very little pulling though and did well other than trying to eat pinecones at the end. (surprising, this from the pup who hated to eat before)

After class Joy talked to us about putting our blogs on the website (so cool!) and then Coreena, Eclipse, Eva and I stopped at the pet store to get Eva some more kibble then it was on the road home! We did stop not far from Salem for gas and some food as we'd only ate breakfast and it was 5 by then. We then stopped at a small park along the freeway and got some pictures, some nice ones! Although Coreena has those so I can't post them right now.

We got home just before 8 and talked to Mom some, oohed and aahed (wanted to be like the public) on how nice the deck was all cleaned up and then Coreena and I went on a bike ride. Teddy didn't get to go this time as his foot pads are all raw :-( I want musher's secret but will try baby socks on him first as I don't have a ton of money but running with a bike is the only way to get him adequate exercise as walking is boring for him and the treadmill is stressful. Running with a bike he has to pay attention and run so it's both physical and mental stimulation all at one /grin/

Then we sat with the dogs out on the deck around our fire "pit" (that's only been used twice in two years) but it was nice looking at the stars and talking to family.

Today after meeting we started the "new deck" project. We got 189 boards, today in around 3.5-4 hours we got 80 sanded and stained and about 1/3 of the old deck ripped up. Some supports will have to be changed but ah well. We'll be working on it in the evenings most nights this week, so our bike riding may be put on hold. *sigh*

Eclipse was good today, while outside with us he mostly laid in the shade but spent most of the day inside by himself. He's not overly hyper or anything and even stayed loose in the den while Alex and I ran to Lowe's for the stain and sandpaper and such. And he got into Nothing!

I think that's all from here... we have a better babysitting schedule starting this week and Alex has some side jobs and another interview tomorrow so Eclipse and I will be entertaining Emily and Aiden.

Hopefully I hear from the newspaper this week, but we shall just wait and see!

Have a good night all and congrats on all the new pups and be good to those IFT!!

Ally & Alex w/ Eclipse, Teddy & Kira


  1. The job offer closes the 23rd so I would think that you will.

  2. He sounds like such a good boy!!! Everyone loves's so funny!

  3. Ah yes, the power of Gold! There's just something irresistible about it. When I'm out with my Lab service dog friends, I have to admit that I seem to get noticed first. Could be that sashay that I've perfected!

    And when I'm carrying mom's leftovers out in the "doggy bag" everyone oohs and aahs!