Monday, November 29, 2010

Field Trip

 Luc and I took off this afternoon on a field trip as a part of his therapy dog training.  He was totally wild jumping up and down, running through the house with a pillow in his mouth when I was trying to put on his vest, collar, scarf, and leash.  I was dreading the outing since he was so wild; however, I was pleasantly surprised.  As soon as we walked out of the house to the Jeep, he was an almost "normal" dog. 

Cows were next to the water tank which was a short distance from where the car was parked.  He did not even try to chase them.  He sat and stayed when told so I could open the back of the Jeep and open the gate into the crate in the car.

The plan was to stop by the UPS office to ship my "new" Canon camera to the factory repair center.  The shutter sticks....ugh!  I'm back to using the Nikon Coolpic which doesn't do such a bad job. 

Before taking Luc into UPS, I went in alone to explained to the manager that Luc was being trained as a therapy dog and asked if I could bring him into the store while getting the package off.  The manager gave his okay, and again I could hardly believe how well-mannered Luc was.  He only stood up twice to look over the counter to introduce himself.  :D

Luc and I were in a narrow pathway while drivers were going in and out with dollies loaded with packages.  It is important that a therapy dog not get scared with strange or loud noises or, in this case, big stacks of boxes being wheeled past them.  Luc made an A.  He did not get nervous or or make a sudden move to get away; he sat still as mouse right next to me

Luc gave a few kisses but not very many.  As soon as I corrected him, he quit and allowed people to pet him without giving them a Luc bath. 

We stopped by Home Depot to pick up a kitchen faucet.  Luc was really, really good.  Again, a kiss or two but for the most part he was a well-behaved dog.  I am encouraged!  If he continues to improve, I think we might get a therapy dog certification from Penny's From Heaven Foundation.  Then it's off to volunteer our services.

Luc and I will be doing 3-4 field trips a week until the test date of December 18.  Did I mention I'm encouraged?!As soon as we get home, I take off the vest, leash, etc., and allow him to do whatever he wants to do, which usually means that the second he comes in the door he grabs the nearest pillow and runs away with it dangling from his mouth.  I never correct that behavior except to simply remove the pillow and I especially do not correct since we've been in training.  Hopefully, he is making the connection that good behavior is required when the vest and the leash goes on as well as a ride in the car.  When the vest comes off, then it's back to goofy Luc with virtually very few expectations. 

Until next time, God bless.


DJan said...

I just love that dog! He's learning, and he's so sweet. Thank you so much for sharing these outings with me, so I can hear how he's doing. He's so very fortunate to have such a patient and gentle partner (YOU).

The Japanese Redneck said...

Glad he did so well. That's the key to be consistent!

SquirrelQueen said...

That does sound promising Lynn, if Luc is associating good behavior with the vest and leash then the certification should be no problem.

Sorry to hear about your camera. Hopefully the repair center can fix the problem.

Quasi Serendipita said...

Thank you so much for your lovely comment on my blog this morning. Luc is gorgeous! What is a therapy dog? I've never heard of them before.