LD Training10 who’s the boss

Wow how time flies! Wren, my little songbird and I have been together for 1 week already. Can you believe that? And guess who’s the boss of this relationship?

Definitely not me!

Nope, Wren, the glaring pup has established herself as king of the hill, hahaha. I’m just along to pretend I’m the boss and give her commands and issue her the treats when she glares at me and demands that I give them to her.

Yes, you read that right. Wren, demands her treats. I can occasionally get away with not giving her one when she glares at me like, hey woman, I did a good thing, now give me that treat already will ya? Such as in moments like below.

This morning we had country snow travel and Wren did a very good job. I do have to make sure we’re on the left edge of the curb every few steps otherwise we’d end up walking down the middle of the road.

So, once again, Wren says she is not, absolutely not, walking through anything that could get her all dirty!

Despite what her puppy raiser claims, Wren says different.

Ha, Wren says that I am working, I do not play in water! I do not walk through big piles of flying leaves! What do you take me for. You walk through them, I shall go around them.

Hahahahah, and once this little princess goes around the leaves, big puddles of water or whatever may be in our way she stops and looks at me like, um hello, where’s my treat? I just did a good thing. Now give me that pumpkin treat!

Here is one of those rare moments I can ignore the royal bossiness and get her moving because we are still working and she gets going again along her happy bouncy way.

But then again, maybe it’s a false sense of security and I only think I won the battle!

Then, we have moments like this one!

This afternoon we learned about doing *timeout* with the dogs and practiced it with them on the practice route with a nice strange dog hanging around to bug us.

Um, well, clearly me, mom, was not paying attention to how good she was being and giving her those lovely treats that she demands I give her. Instead I only verbally praised her. oooooooooopppppppppsssssss!

We get to the pavilion that’s located on Leaders campus where those that smoke can hang out and that you pass through when finishing up the practice route. Well, we get to the middle and Wren stops, stops cold and ***super glares** at me! Linda, the lovely trainer that I have thinks it’s awfully funny. Why, because Wren is glaring at me for those treats that I haven’t given her yet because I wasn’t quite at the top of my game, oooppsy! She absolutely ***refuses*** to move until I give her one.

Yes, my dog, Wren, decides when it is past time she gets her reward.

Chuckling, I give the little monster her treat and you think she’s done punishing me yet?

Oh no no no no!

I tell her what a good girl she is and to find the door and what does she do?

run run run

Ah hell!

Slams on breaks. Here you are, here’s the door!

This dog is trying to kill me again

Do I get to meet these Border Collies that taught Wren how to go like a speed demon, huh huh huh?

Hahahah, more fun tomorrow!

LD Training9 traffic checks in the rain

It is pretty funny that someone was just asking me last night about how Leader Dog does with trafic checks and I didn’t want to answer them until I knew if anything had changed from the last time I was here.

Well hell, I didn’t write too much about the trafic checks last time, but I’m pretty sure they were done just alittle differently than this time.

For the morning lesson we went downtown and practice the route we were going to do without worrying about someone purposefully trying to run us over. Nope, we just had to play in the rain and swim through puddles.

BTW, what is with me getting dogs that ***refuse*** to get their little paws wet when it comes to huge puddles? Wren, the perfect little songbird took me around the puddles, no problem, I can deal with that since I don’t want wet feet.

Well, then we had to come to the mother of all puddles. One very big puddle that went all the way across where we were crossing the street to get to the up curb. So Wren had no choice, she either had to go through it, or jump over it. Well . . .

Wren did nothing. She got to the edge of the puddle and just stopped. Nope, I’m not going any further, are you crazy! While I of course take a step into the big huge puddle and now have a major cold wet foot. ***sighs*** why me?

So, after I step over the puddle with my other foot Wren is like, Oh, I can do that and proceeds to then, only then, jump over the puddle!

That’s it, when it rains, i just need to rent a boat so my perfect songbird doesn’t get her feet wet!

This afternoon we did the same route but this time with the killer driver, Dr. phil and his quiet car!

Wren did absolutely wonderulf on the first one. She slowed down and stopped with plenty of space between us and Killer Phil.

Second trafic check she’s cruising along and . . . ***slam on the breaks*** eeeeeeeeppppp, darn crazy drivers! Great job Wren!

Ha, the third trafic check she decides that that crazy driver is back and she would just try going around the back of the silly car that got in her way. After slowing down to show me the car was there of course. lol, what a girl!

The downside about being a retrain

So, this aftenoon after we had our near misses with Dr. Phil the crazy driver it’s time for me to give Wren an instruction. We’re at the downcurb and I need her to do a left cutback. Here’s what happened!

Me, Luna, erm, Wren, erm, dog, whatever your name is, go that way!
Linda, hahahahahahahahahahaha!
Wren, sighs and does a perfect cutback even though her handler has no idea what her name is and what direction to tell her to go in.

Stop glaring at me Wren

I think those other doggies Wren was raised with taught her how to glare at people to or something. She really has that glaring at me look down real good.

We’re heading back to the training center and well, I got the glare from miss princess.
Me, Wren, forward.
Wren, starts taking me across the street.
Me, good girl Wren. straight, find the curb.
Wren, ok, not a problem!
Me, good girl. Gives her a treat. Wren, forward.
Wren, off she starts and takes just a few steps.
Me, awesome, Wren, left.
Wren, ***glares***
Me, Wren, left.
Wren, finally makes the left turn and ***glares*** at me again.
Linda, hahahahah, May, do you know when she’s looking at you.
Me, um, yep. I can feel the glare she sending my way.
Linda, yep, it’s like, hey we can’t go left yet.
Me, yep, that glare says, really, what are you thinking!

I think this puppy was trained well too well, hahahahaah. Oh the future glares I have coming my way!

See you all tomorrow!

LD Training8 A day of rest

Hello everyone! Welcome to the next issue of Wren the songbird and I!

For those that get the updates via email, this entry has a video in it so you will need to go to my youtube channel to view it. That channel once again can be found at www.youtube.com/canadianlynx1

Can you believe I’ve been here a week already? I’m sure my lesser half is like ***hurry up*** and get home will ya?

I get to talk to my boys every morning and sometimes in the evening as well, but all depends on what’s going on, but I soooooo can’t wait to get home and hug and kiss them to pieces! However, I have this strong feeling they will forget all about me and torture my little songbird Wren, hahaaha!

At the end of my post last night I posted that I totally forgot about Bingo. Well, luckily enough, I made it! i only missed the first round.

Man, let me tell you that game got ***intense*** at the end, the one where you have to fill the whole board. A whole lot of people, including myself just needed one, count it, one number! Everyone was shouting out what number was needed.


and so on! The South American table took the win!

Today was pretty much a day of rest and my plan was to practice on the practice route and work on learning to read Wren and her I, but sadly that didn’t work out so well. Due to all the perfumes, shampoos, conditioners and all that people wear my head was like, enough is enough woman and you’re doing absolutely nothing today. So, after breakfast I went right back to bed and Wren and I just slept the morning away. I woke up in just enough time to get my laundry done before lunch, lol.

The Canine Development Center tour was great! I’m hoping I did a good job of catching everything on camera. please excuse the close-ups, especially of my guide. Ha, I turned around one time and ***bam*** there she is!

Let me know what you think.

See everyone tomorrow for the start of week number 2! What will we get into next?

LD Training7 Santa survives and weekly check in

Good day everyone. Today’s post is pretty short and I promise it’s ok to drink while reading this one, smiles.

Rude wake up call
Ugh, seriously Wren, you couldn’t give me some kind of warning that you were going to wake me up at 3:30AM? I do miss my children, but I at least know what to expect when my baby screams his head off when he wakes up.

Wren decided at 3:30 in the bloody morning that she’d take a major poop inside her crate. Let me tell you that her poops are as bad as Kalvin’s diapers or maybe wurse! I have enough stinky smelling boys in the house Wren, I don’t need you to add to the mix, honest! This of course is after she pooped for me at 8PM and then again at 10:30PM. I hope it’s all out of her system now, because I seriously don’t need that as my alarm clock, thank you!

Santa survived another Wren trip
Drats! I missed an opportunity to get a video of Wren and I working. I misunderstood Linda when she said we should wait on doing the video for the trip. I thought she meant for the whole morning trip, but turns out she meant just for the first round.

This time on the football route we all got to go out by ourselves with the trainers either in cars or standing in certain spots around the football in case we needed assistance.

Wren and I did an awesome job together. We started out a little rocky because I think Wren was looking for a trainer to be with us, but after a few steps we were off for the races.

We only had to stop twice. Once because I think Wren untied my shoe while we were sitting on the bus and I didn’t notice it until we were walking. I got to the curb and Paul was like

Paul, hey May, I think you have a problem, hahahaa.
Me, yes, I think my shoe is untied. It keeps beating me up as we were walking and I think it was hitting Wren at times too.
Paul, chuckles.
Me, bends down to tie my shoe.
Wren, let me help you with that.
Paul, I think Wren wants to help.
Me, yeah yeah yeah, Wren, do ou mind? Please get out of the way so I can tie my shoe.

Finally, got my shoe tied with much help from Wren and we were off again.

Another time we had to stop is because I thought we reached the buses already and I was like, no way, we can’t be near the corner.

Nope, we weren’t, Linda told me that it was a family getting in a van that sounded just like the buses. ***grumbles***

Off we run down the hill again!

Wren did one hell of a job. She didn’t even bother snarling at Santa this time. So, maybe he’ll forgive her for yesterday?

Weekly check in
Wren and I are doing great. Linda had no issues for us that she had to bring up so asked me what I wanted to work on.

For next week we’re going to try and get some food distractions in and hopefully some dog distractions. We’re going to get some night travel in so that I can see how Wren works at night and a Detroit trip.

Much to Wren’s dismay we’re also going to work with the gentle leader just so I know what to expect from her if I ever have to use it. I honestly don’t think I will with her, but better safe than sorry. Linda says that Wren absolutely hates the thing more than any other dog she’s seen with gentle leader training. Oh, what I have to look forward too, lol.

Tomorrow is a day of rest and everyone in class is looking forward to that. Crap, writing this post it just dawned on me that I just missed playing bingo. wEll hell.

Ah well, see you all for tomorrows issue.

LD Training6 Squirrels and Santa

You can’t have a time at Leader Dogs without those awesome, lovely, fun loving squirrels!

Working with phil
I asked for dog distractions, not squirrels. Dogs dogs dogs! Take away these blasted squirrels!

Tara, was first out today and she mentioned that she got dog distractions and I was really hoping I would get some so I could see what Wren would be like since I have them at work.

But nooooooo, I had to go and get those little buggers, squirrels squirrels squirrels! Isn’t it too cold for these little monsters to be out?

I have to say though, that after I got her attention back on me Wren did a great job on finishing out the route. It was our best route so far!

Linda is so totally awesome, but it was nice having a good route without her to show me that Wren and I could work together was we ironed out the bugs. Minor bugs, but it felt good knowing we can be a good team. It’s hard this time around having a trainer that is the trainer of the dog as well. I love a challenge, but whew, it’s work, smiles. My last time here Jessica was not Luna’s main trainer so I didn’t have to work super hard to win her over like I’m having to do with Wren and Linda.

Just in case Linda ever reads this I’m not saying my time is horrible, no no no, far from it. It just means it’s a totally new experience and I’m learning loads more new things to deal with for this match, smiles.

Wren meets santa and gets put on the naughty list

Hahahahahahahahah, so this afternoon we worked with Linda and worked on the football route due to the fact that downtown is getting ready for the Christmas parade on Sunday and it’s a ***huge*** headache for humansa and dogs.

Here’s what happened during our route.

Me, ok Wren, lets go. A nice easy route. I have my victor-trek and treat bag attached to my pants on the right side for easy access and hoping that I get use to where things sit.

***mistake number one***

Me, drats! Stop, hang on Wren.
Linda, it’s ok, just leafs on the ground.
Me, nope, that’s not it, my darn pants are falling off.
Linda, ***laughs at me*** What, feeling a little lopsided?
Me, rumbles! Wren, ok, forward lets try this again.

we get going really good again and . . .

Me, darn it, got to stop again Wren, it’s freaken cold out here and my hands are about to fall off.
Wren, snorts
Linda, I keep forgetting mine on the kitchen counter.
Me, yep, they look really pretty there too, hahaha.

Ok, off we go again and get to the curb.

Me, curses! Stupid, blooded pants, victor and treat bag.
Linda, hahaha, this is the most amusing route. Welcome to everyday life, never know what may hapen.
Me, hmph! Off we go again.

bark bark bark bark

Ah crap, not this too! I wanted a dog distraction earlier today, not now! But, these particular dogs Wren just looked at and kept going when I told her too.

Wren, stops, turns and growls!
Me, what the heck?
Linda, it’s a moving Santa.
Wren, growls!
Me, ok, Wren it’s ok, it’s just Santa. Lets go.
Wren, not moving and continues to stare and growl at Santa.
Linda, it’s ok Wren he won’t hurt you.
Wren, snorts and growls some more.
Me, ok, lets go Wren. REally, Santa won’t get us. Lets go go go!
Wren, another snort and growl and finally decides to leave Santa.

Yeah, I don’t think Wren is a fan of Santa! I believe she is now going to be put on his naughty list and get nothing for Christmas! Man I wish I was videoing this route.

Wish Santa luck for tomorrow incase I end up going there again tomorrow!

LD Training3 Lets meet Wren, my little songbird

For those that receive this via email, there is a video in this post. So to watch it you must go to my youtube channel. www.canadianlynx.ca

Joy to the world
The day has come!
I got my Leader Dog!
She is my little song bird.
My tiny black lab.
She’s only 50 pounds
She’s only 50 pounds
The wind is going to blow us away!

Hello everyone to the day you’ve all been waiting for. The meeting of the early Christmas present. My furry four-legged friend!

Why oh why does this always happen to me? I’m seriously cursed or something. my second time at Leader and I’m once again the last in my group to get my dog. And this time I really do mean last. I didn’t get my puppy until almost 2PM! Can you believe that?

I think I wore a hole in the floor in my room from all my pacing back and forth!

So, I have to make a correction. In the video I spelled my dog’s name wrong. I thought Linda said it had an *i* in it, but it does not. It has an *e*. Either way the first thing that came to my mind was two things when I heard my dogs name.

One, the cartoon Ren and Stimpy
2. We have a friend who’s daughter’s name is known by Renny, sometimes called Ren.

But, when I was corrected on the spelling of my litttle precious ones name and when I mentioned her name to my classmates I learned that her name is a type of songbird!

So, lets meet my little songbird shall we?

She is a female black lab and the tiniest thing I’ve ever seen. She weighs only 50lbs and a good wind can definitely blow us to the moon! She is 17 months old and turns the wonderful age of 2 on July 3. Linda told me that this most amusing dog is a first time puppy for her raiser. So congratulations to them for doing a great job with this girl! I hope that they are someplace where the other Leader puppy raisers can reach them and let them know about the video of issue day.

So, are you all wondering my precious girls name yet?

I played a short little guessing game on facebook and twitter to see if anyone could get it and there were only 2 that did!

Lets meet my Christmas Songbird, Wren!

eeeeeep, leave my hair alone!

Oh no, not another Kalvin!

Wren, oo, look something long and hanging down for me to swat at! OO, it swings when I do that. Lets do it again!
Me, no no no, stop that. Here, have a treat instead
Wren, don’t mind if I do. ***chomp chomp chomp*** Great, back to these swinging things. Can I lick them too?
Me, eep, stop that, leave my hair alone! Here, how about a bone instead?

Wait, Wren, that is not a ball!

Ah yes, I’ll take that and toss it in the air and roll over on my back and beat it with my paws! Oo, such great times I’m having!

Ok, I’m done with that, what’s next for us to do, huh, huh, huh? More treats maybe?

Yipes, this dog is going to kill me!

Ok, I thought walking with Luna was bad with her speed walking. Oh no no no, Luna has nothing on this little songbird Not only does she go from 0 to 60 in point 5 seconds, but she then picks up more speed when her target is in sight before slamming on the breaks and trying to toss me through whatever door or off whatever curb may be in front of me, lol.

Can someone send me crash suits please?

Another musical one coming into the household?

So, after dinner we did a little walking up and down the halls practicing walking together and her choosing if she would listen to me, lol, when we came across Justin playing the guitar. He was in the middle of the song when we entered the piano room and all was well until he reached the end of the song.

growl, bark, growl, snort, growl, whine!

Um, what the heck!

Me, Hey Wren, stop that, it’s not allowed.
Wren, growl, snort, growl!
Justin, what was that?
Wren, little barks, whines, bark bark bark!
Me, um Justin, I don’t think you were suppose to stop playing. Hurry up, play some more!
Justin, ***starts playing the guitar***
Wren, sighs and wags her tail. Great, all is right with the world again!

Oh dear, I think this dog and I are going to have some amusing times together! More tomorrow after our first full day together!

LD Training2 The Comical Christmas Class

Wow, what a day! I don’t remember it being so long before. I think they added hours or activities or something!

So, first before I go on about the Christmas class I’m in I want to mention about the story I heard regarding Juno walks.

Sadly the person mis-spoke and what they said was not true. We were told that Juno would be with actual dogs and not a person holding the handle. Too bad because I would have loved it. Maybe one day Leader maybe consider changing to that method?

So, nothing new in regards to juno walks. We’re still pulled along by strange instructors that play Juno.

With that being said, hahaha, my Juno loves pennies and picking up stray tennis balls! How, oh how do I keep getting these amusing Juno’s? Last time I had one that ran into walls and picked up beer cans!

For those that are wondering, my trainer this round is with Linda Fisher and she’s totally awesome! I did warn her about working with me and that I was trouble. But, seems someone beat me to it and warned her about me first. Hmm, should I be scared? Ha, wonder if they pointed her to my blog entries before.

So, this Christmas class is rather comical. Just like my last class everone seems to have hit it off right from the bat. There doesn’t seem to be a non-teasing one amung us. I will definitely be putting up some videos of this group when activities allow. For example, one person has already been warned that the first time it snows I’m grabbing a video of her in it since where she’s from there is no snow! The poor thing! She must have something to always remember her first dog time, right/ Nothing like a roll in the snow caught on video to do the trick? She claims this class will drive her to drinking. Well, our first drinking party is on Saturday so lets see if that prediction comes true!

We also apparently have some dancers and musicians in this group, so hopefully I can catch that craziness too.

I definitely will be putting up a video of my dog day just like last time. So for any new puppy raisers that are now reading my blog entries, be prepared!

Bad bad me also claimed that one client is getting a chihuahua for his first dog and to his dismay other clients, trainers and volunteers started agreeing with that prediction! Think they better fix his harness and leash before tomorrow afternoon!

Yes, with loud ***groans*** from all of the guide dog users we were sad to hear that we must wait until after lunch before getting our furry friends! Oh, the torture!

I’m thinking by the hints Linda gave that a golden is not in my future. So sorry Jaydon, mommy doesn’t seem to be getting a Sammy! It’s going to be a female with attitude! Of course anything can change before that long long time of after lunch, but at the moment, goldens are out of the running!

The youngest in this group is in their 20’s and the oldest is in their 70’s. What a range eh? There are 20 of us in all this week. 14 for guide dogs and 6 for mobility. The client that couldn’t make it yesterday due to mother nature being rude did make it in today. Her welcoming party was a fire drill! Welcome to Leader, now please stand out in the cold! Fire drills in 35 degrees! Where’s the camp fire?

Time to try for sleep. I ahve my play clothes picked out for tomorrow and the non-liver flavored Charley Bears ready for my puppy with attitude! I will win my puppy over from Linda with the much better flavored tasting ones! So, tune in tomorrow for the Christmas Puppy Dog issue part of the program!

LD Training1 Welcome back to Leader Dogs

Welcome back ladies and gentlemen! It’s time for the Christmas edition of training and how exciting it is to be here!

Whew, the day startedoff with me wondering how long I’d make it without sleep, lol. I knew when the time came that sleep would definitely not be in the cards and I was correct. However, I did not count on sick children and 11 month old little monkies playing their part, lol.

I left home about 11AM and made it to Leader around 12:45 or so. Thank you so very much to The Lions Club for giving me a ride to Leader. It was a fun enjoyable trip all the way up.

The weather here at Leader was wet wet and did I mention wet? I asked my friend if maybe I should have bought ice skates and a boat instead of boots to class since in some spots it looked icy and definitely sounded extremely flooded!

***difference from last training***
1. No, lost, luggage! No having to borrow my instructors clothes and wondering when the heck mine would show up or if they would, ha! No walking through an airport that seemed like it would never end. Nope, I got the pleasure of driving up and having my luggage with me the whole way!

2. I’m in the Avon Wing this time around and have already forgotten that I don’t go right when exiting my room to get to the dining room! ***grumbles*** how many times will that happen? I also keep forgetting about the darn chair that’s hanging out between the door and the dresser/desk. Really should move that thing before it kills me!

3. There are now amazon echos in the rooms and man my one at home is faster than the one here. I ask her a question and she has to decide if she’s going to wake up before answering me, lol. Makes me wonder if my google at home would like being friends with this echo?

4. The assigned seating happened tonight at dinner unlike when I was here last when it happened at breakfast. Unless something changes the majority at my table are all from Michigan. How funny is that?

5. Finally, the instructors for this class we don’t meet until tomorrow. Only the volunteers and RA’s are here tonight.

6. Oh, almost forgot. It looks like the internet is much much better than it was when I got Luna. The connection back then was extremely slow when loading pages and when disconnect if you weren’t doing anything after a while which got rather annoying! So far this seems to do much better!

There’s one other big difference regarding juno walks that is different, but I will talk about that tomorrow if the story is actually true. If it is I will be sooooooo excited about that change! My friends that were in classes before now didn’t mention it when they were here unless I missed it. Which is possible with the super chatty fun Whats App group that we’re in!

I have met some pretty interesting people in my class so far, but will talk more about them tomorrow after we do the introduction gathering after dinner. Guide dog training wise there are only 13 of us and 6 for mobility training. There’s at least 5 new guide dog handlers, but will clarify that tomorrow. One person couldn’t make it in today due to mother nature being rude and blocking the roads so they couldn’t get to the airport. Fingers crossed that tomorrow goes better for them!

We of course had spaghetti for dinner and it was ***great*** as Leader Dog food could be! But for now it’s time to try for sleep, my first quiet sleep for the next 3 weeks.

BTW, I wonder how many times I’ll wake up wondering where the kids are because it’s too quiet?