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.

B1
N52
N37

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 Training5 Wren thinks waaaay too much

Ok, I have to start this post off by commenting on how totally freaking awesome those sugar cookies I had were or better say still are. I still have loads left and that’s after sharing them too!

For those that have already been to Leader have probably had the taste of some form of these awesome cookies made by Bonnie Luternow. The GDMI’s definitely love them too. I asked if they wanted some when she brought them to me and I had to hope I’d get or at least one back when the container made it’s way back to me, lol.

So, Bonnie, thanks loads for the very tasty sugar cookies. They were a hit!

Ok, on to Wren the speed demon!

So, this little monkey had me all in a panic this morning thinking she ***seriously*** had to go outside. Like right now woman, I can’t wait!

Normally, it’s I get up first, have my shower, get ready for the day and then take care of miss Wren.

Nooooooooo, this morning she was having none of that! She demanded that I take her out before I was ready. She spun around in her crate, she whined, she hmphed at me, whined some more and then had the nerve to bark at me!

Like seriously! What a brat.

So, grumbled the whole time I gave in and took her outside worried that something was wrong or that we were about to have a serious mess to clean up.

She created lake Wren outside followed by a 2-bagger and then had the nerve to give me another little pile that I sadly could not pick up. Um, poop machine, I only had 2 bags. ***sighs*** Why me!

To make it wurse because I was sooooo worried about her, we locked ourselves out of our room!

EEEEEEEEEPPPPPPPPP, now what do I do? There’s no one outside because everyone else ***included*** the other dogs don’t come out until 6:30, not, 6:05. There’s no one in any of the rooms starting at room 21, not until we get to those on the Rodchester wing. I’m soooo not walking that far! Then we have Tru . . .

Oh, duh May, pray that Trudy is ready for the day and see if you can sneak through her door and not piss off her dog since her room is right next door to you!

So, we get back inside and back to our room after I get someone to let us in and Wren goes into the bathroom to where her bowl sits and sits there like

Ok, I’m all better now, where’s my breakfast?

Bah, what a way to start the day!

Morning walk with Wren.

Our morning walk was so totally awesome. Wren and I were not attached to Linda for the first part of our trip. Wren and I walked to the cupcake place with no problems at all. And she didn’t even try to throw me through the door this time! Whew, minor progress in that regard!

Linda did put on the extra collar and leash for the rest of the route just in case Wren needed help getting me to understand what she needed me to do because of all of the lovely booby traps that are set up.

Afternoon walk

Wow, Wren and I did the ***whole*** route this time without Linda attaching to us! Wren did such a good job and showed that she thinks waaaaaay too much. I have to watch the things I do with this girl for sure.

So, those traps I mentioned for this morning were of course still there and I made the mistake of giving Wren a treat after she did a great job showing me and taking me around one. Well, little miss smarty pants figured that

Hey, you gave me one back there, why the heck aren’t you giving me one now? Where’s my treat? Why aren’t you giving me my treat?

I also learned that I can’t unfortunately keep my treat hand in my pocket either so it doesn’t freeze and fall off. Oh no no no! If I do that then the little smarty pants again thinks I’m getting her a treat!

As Linda says, this dog thinks waaaaaaaay too much, lol. I better watch out!

Here’s another thing with Wren that I didn’t even notice she does until Linda asked me about it after lunch today.

Linda, May, how do you get your dog to walk on leash with it just looped over your arm?
Me, um, huh?

And of course, the moment she asked me that Wren decided she’d no longer be nice and tried to get to Linda, hahahaha. linda is her trainer of course whom I’m trying to win her from.

But anyways, I actually never paid attention that Wren walked nicely beside me when the leash was just looped over my arm. She just automaticly did it correctly that I just tell her what an awesome dog she is and we went on our merry way.

So, to clarify. When you just walking your dog beside you, you normally hold the leash closer to the collar or somewhere in that area. Well, when I’m carrying something back to our room from meal time like a drink or something, I put the drink in my left hand and use my right hand on the rail to make sure we find our room. So by doing that I can’t of course hold the leash, so instead I loop it over my arm and tell Wren to heel and off we go.

Pretty smart dog I have here and does well until that Linda comes along, lol.

Tomorrow we work with Phil in the morning since Linda has something to do. I hope that goes just as well. So, until tomorrow, take care all from Wren the speed demon and I!

LD Training4 First Walk with Wren

Whew, I am so sorry that this update is late. I was apparently super tired last night. I laid down and was out like a light.

So, my first night with Wren was rather amusing and I didn’t get much sleep then because I was too busy laughing at her.

Our night was spent with my dog growling and snarling at whatever dream creatures were comingto attack us. Ha, and it wasn’t the nice lets play growling either. It was the I’m going to bite your head off if you get any closer.

My first walk with the super speed demon!

I just have to say that I absolutely without a doubt hate walking in boots with a dog. My balance feels all off.

The morning walk we stayed on campus and did the practice route and I didn’t feel that it went great. We didn’t do bad, but I just couldn’t get my stride going well. STupid boots! I also held her back a little bit because it’s been like 2 and a half years since I had to use those guide dog muscles and my body was yelling at me and demanding that I stop the torture.

Now, the afternoon walk went much much better. I decided to switch to wearing my shoes instead of my boots and whew, what a change!

For the afternoon we went downtown and did some destination work. We learned how to find the cupcake shop.

Man, this is one awesome girl. She learns extremely fast.

She’s like
Me, Wren, left find the door.
Wren, ***speed up and slam on the breaks*** here you go, here’s the door. Now where’s my treat?
Me, ***holds arm out slightly to catch myself from going through the door*** ha, great girl!

And it’s not just doors she does this with. She slams on the breaks when coming to curbs too.

I think I need to take out insurance, but I wonder what kind of coverage I need to ask for?

The only thing Wren and I have to work on is how to read each other. She’s a very light dog so reading her is a bit difficult when she is trying to get move to move to the right. When she pulls left it’s not too hard, but we need work in this area.

After we were all done working and I had her bring me back to our chair she was all excited that she got to work and she did an awesome job that she hopped up on my lap and gave me loads of kisses!

I also think this girl is a mind reader. From the moment I got this girl she sits all nice and calm under the table exactly where I want her to sit. I didn’t have to teach it to her at all.

I’ll be trying a crate with her to see how she does with it so that way if I need to take care of my boys or she needs a break from all the craziness at home she has a safe place.

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!