Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Day in the Life of... A Working Guide Dog

A working Guide Dog
Readers: This is the latest in our "Day in the Life" series. Click on the "A Day in the Life" label link to list the entire series (see Labels section, right hand side).

Hello Everyone!

I know it’s been a while since my last posting, but boy have I been busy! As you know, my partner Kevin and I graduated from Guide Dogs a few months ago, and we have been having a great time settling into our new life together.

The night after graduation we both slept like rocks! That was such a big day, getting to see my puppy raisers was so amazing, and they were so proud of me!

Then came a whirlwind of change! Kevin packed up his belongings and mine too, I guess I was going home with him! We boarded the class bus like we always did, but somehow this time it felt a little different. The next thing I knew we were at a huge, noisy place with metal birds swooping around. And then, you are never gonna believe this, we actually got into the belly of the big metal bird or as I learned later was called an airplane, and flew away! All I know is that one minute we were in San Francisco, a place that I was familiar with, and after a bit of a nap, we were in a place that was much warmer and the air felt heavy and had a million new smells.

When we got off the bird, oh I mean airplane, we were met with a great deal of excitement by a really nice lady who was very happy to see Kevin and fussed all over me too – I LIKE HER!!!! Together we drove to a pretty tree-lined part of town and pulled up to a house, much like the one I grew up in. Kevin reached down and scratched me behind the ears and said “welcome home little buddy.” I knew right then that this was my new home I would be sharing with Kevin, the nice lady who made a fuss over me, and oh my goodness (this is so cool!) - a cat named Mischief!

After a day of getting to know my new house, and working out my relationship with Mischief (Mischief is the boss, by the way, and lives up to her name), I was happy to settle down for a long snooze on my special fleece pad from school next to my partner Kevin and the nice lady who I found out is called Nancy.

But there hasn’t been much time to just hang out with Mischief, a couple days after we arrived it was time to get to work! In the mornings, after Kevin feeds me and takes me for a little walk, he harnesses me up and we hit the streets! Kevin really knows his way around town. He tells me which way to turn and I make sure we stay safe along the way.

As I came to find out, Kevin is a third grade school teacher. To get to work we walk about a half mile to a bus stop, board the bus, and then exit a few blocks from the school. Working together Kevin and I get to work on time every day. I can tell that it makes Kevin very happy to travel with me, I get lots of praise and petting, and sometimes even a treat, along the way!

Kevin’s job is really cool. I love being around all those kids all day, and they like it too! Sometimes, they have lessons that involve me, one of my favorites is when they have cooking class and make me cookies!!!

Kevin and I pretty much go everywhere together. Last night we went to the movies and it was sooo hard to ignore the popcorn that was just sitting there, on the floor, asking to be snapped up! And on Sunday we will go to church. I learned a couple weeks ago however, that I’m not supposed to sing along, although in my humble opinion, it did bring a much needed moment of comic relief to the morning service, or so it seemed when everyone had a big chuckle over my rendition of the hymn.

Well I’ve got to go now, I just heard Kevin pick up my harness in the other room – I wonder where we are going today…I can’t wait to find out!

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