Fourth Day Of Guide Dog ClassPosted: September 2, 2010
I am starting to get used to this getting up at 7 o’clock lark lol. I fed and watered my woman at about half 7.
Breakfast was again at 8 o’clock. I had another bowl of porrige and again, it was gorgious.
We met the instructors again at 9 o’clock. I wasn’t going out until about half 10. I was planning to do an obiedence session and that, but it ended up that I just sat and had a gab on the phone with another guide dog owner until about a quarter past 10 lol. It was nice to just relax. So I quickly took Ushi out to spend before our walk at half 10.
The walk was just more turns and stuff. There was a bin at one point though that the dog had to walk round. When you are walking with a guide dog, you have to make sure your hand is at your leg. I thought that i was going to fall off the side kerb, so I started to hang back, resulting in a brush with that bin. The instructor says that the dog can’t guide if you are behind it.
There was another point on the walk where you had to turn right, and then go straight on emmediatly to get to another kerb. The two down kerbs were really close to each other. There were a couple of points where she went to go on round me and behind me, so I just had to be a bit firmer.
Apart from walking into the bin, It went okay. I still wasn’t putting on the harness yet though.
At about half 11, we headed vack to the hotel. The dog care and welfare advisor was visiting northern ireland, as he often does. He is in charge of Scotland and Northern ireland. He chatted to us about what his role was, and how he is the main man that all the vet invoices go to, and he is the one we call if the dog is getting a non routine test that she may not need. Next, he explained about the “health book”, which basically has all her medical records. The vet fills in the top sheet, and sends that off to the health and welfare advisor. You take the health book with you all the time when ever you go to the Vets.
He next explained about when to worm and when to give her flee and tick treatment. Worming should take place every 3 months, but the tablet doesn’t prevent the dog getting worms, cause if it comes in contact with another dog with worms, for example, it has to be re wormed. Once every 6 months you should go for a regular checkup and vaxinations, if you need them.
Next, was a very serious subject. We were talking about obesity in dogs. That is why it is important not to be giving the dog any tidbits, or treats, and to keep her food measured the same way each time you feed the dog. The dog care and welfare advisor can actually take the dog away, if the owner doesn’t improve the dogs diet on advice from guide dogs and the vets. It was quite a scarey subject. We also learnt that each dog will have an “Optimum” weight, that it goes up to, like 30 killograms if the dog is 27, for example. The dog will get a bit fatter once it settles at home, but it won’t be anything major.
After that, he just summerised everything. It was quite an important and informative.
After this, was lunch. We had two visitors as well as the dog care advisor. one was a Guide Dog Mobility Instructor who was about to go off for training to become an instructor, so he was just here to observe. The other person was a guy who was assessing the instructors to make sure they were doing their job. We also had a guide dog mobility assistant, who I had met before, to teach us how to groom our dogs. So it was quite a busy table.
I was going out for my next walk at around half two, so while I was waiting, the guide dog mobility assistant showed me how to groom Ushi. First of all, we went into the lounge with my grooming stuff. She explained what each piece of equipment did, and explained how to use it. We then went into the bathroom, where the “grooming table” was. This was just a low table really, but if you don’t have one at home, you can do it outside or something. As long as it is quiet for just you and her. The grooming is a good way to bond with your dog.
I told her to “Jump up” onto the table first of all. I was then shown how to use the “zoom groom” which is like a massager, and loosens all that dead skin and fur. Next, we used the comb. You hold this flat against the skin, like you are spreading butter. This is the most comfortable way to use it, as it doesn’t hurt her. Next, was the “dandy brush”. This is just to get rid of more hair. It is exactly like a horses brush. Finally, I polished off her coat with a shammy. This makes the coat look gorgious. You just have it damp. and then rub it all over her. There was very little came off her. If she is groomed every day, not alot will come off. It doesn’t matter what time you do it at as long as you do it every day, or every other day.
The person who was assessing the instructors stayed to watch us groom.
By the time I had finished that, it was time to go out for my second walk. Again, this walk was just about following the dog, and controlling her. I didn’t get brushed by any obsticles lol. I learnt what the “guiding road” was, which is either on your right or left, and is a very good orientation clue. If it is on the wrong side, then you are going the wrong direction.
I also learnt how to put on the harness. You basically hold the dog under her chin, and then slide the harness over her head. You then pull the lead from the chest part of the harness, and then buckle your “Girth strap” which should always be on the side of the harness. This is so you can take it off quickly if needed.
This walk went surprisingly well.
After this, we went back to the hotel. The other rehab worker arrived, that i had asked to stay. We all just sat and chatted for a while, until the instructors left.
I fed Ushi at about half 5, as usual. I then took her out to the spending run, before we went down to dinner.
I decided to have codd, chips and mushy peas again lol. It was gorgious as usual.
We were heading back up to the lounge, when we came across the receptionist giving a man a bit of a lecture. He was a rugby player, and had celebrated a bit too much. He had kind of been a bit naughty, and thought he had just come out of the bathroom if you know what I mean. Me and the rehab worker decided not to go swimming, as we both would have felt rather uncomfortable, particularly as they had been drinking and that. So we chatted for a while, and then went off to our rooms, where we just chilled, before the last spend of the night.
It was off to bed shortly afterwards. It was another good day though!