Friday, January 29, 2010

training afternoon

Hello everyone.. yes, that's me.. laying on the floor in what my Mom calls a "puppy meltdown". Today was such a busy day, and sometimes, there just comes a point in time where I have to announce that enough is enough!!!

It was a very cold winter afternoon "Dad" was away at a firefighters training, and instead of just "sitting around" Mom thought it might be nice for me to do some of my "service dog" training. So, she packed me up in the truck and we went down to the mall. I was super good all afternoon.. we walked all around, going over slippery floors, walking past all kinds of people.. in and out of a number of stores, and then I had to lay quietly under the table while Mom had "coffee" with Kassy and Sadie. Just as we were getting ready to leave, I declared that I was tired and had had enough!!!

I couldn't get in the truck fast enough, though Mom did make one more stop and she had me come again.. (in the grocery store...) I was so tired from the mall, I didn't even care that there was all this food and stuff around me. I walked quietly beside Mom and was happy to get back out to the truck again. Once I hit that dog bed that she has in the back.. I was out!!! and didn't even open my eyes until we got back home!!!!

Even then, she had to wake me up and say we were back. I got a big long drink, checked out to see what the cats and other dogs had been doing while we were gone. Then I went into my bed and took a nice long nap before supper. And I have been "quiet" all evening... it was a big day!!!

I have been "working" on my gentle leader as well as in my vest. I don't like the gentle leader very much, but Mom says I will get used to it, and it's what "a big dog uses"... so.. guess that's the way it's going to be. My vest is getting small, so Mom needs to get another one for me...She said she will do that the first of next week.

I like going out and being in the public.. there's lots to do and see.. and people think I am so "cute" or "handsome".... being a "service dog" is a good thing... it's just tiring.....

Friday, January 22, 2010

Happy new year

Hello to everyone, it's me again.. Chester!! I know that Mom and I haven't blogged in a long time.. lots of reasons, first Mom had a computer crash and couldn't blog for quite a few weeks (very discouraging for her!!) and then when the computer came back, she wanted to get the main blog up and running, and then work on ours. Also, we have been quite busy, and it's hard to keep track of all the fun things that we have been doing. So, this blog is to catch you up on the news and from here on, (hopefully) we can keep more of a "daily" track of things.

I am, of course, getting very big.. these photos were taken on Christmas Eve day, when I went to visit Dr. Spahn and all the good folks at DownMaine Vet Clinic - they have said that they will take care of me while I am here in Maine!! (THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH!!) It's "gifts" like this, that make puppy raising so much easier and my Mom is so appreciative of this!! Here I sat nicely on the scale and waited to see how much I weighed.. I came in at 20 lbs.. that makes me as big as all the other dogs in the house!!!!

We have been doing some really neat "field trips".. I got to meet this one guy who seemed quite important. I think Mom called him "Santa".. but (don't tell her I know) I call him "Dad".. not too sure why Dad looked like this, but the kids thought he was really great, and of course, I love him, so this "get up" didn't bother me any.

Then, (while we were visiting with "Santa") they pulled out a firetruck. What a noisy thing that is. I stood and watched all that went on, and afterwards, Mom and I did a little inspection around this big red truck. I looked it all over, climbed around it a bit and then thought "what's the big deal about this"...

I was more interested in getting back to "Santa" and all the kids!!! Oh.. and she didn't get a picture, but some of the firemen in their big boots, tromping all around... no big deal. There really isn't much that frightens or upsets me.. I like to see all that there is...

Another thing that Mom does, is watch other people's dogs when they go away. This is the GREATEST thing, because other than my "house mates".. I have all kinds of friends that come to play. This is my friend, Maggie.. she is a Welch Springer Spaniel and she came for a whole week. Didn't we have a good time!!! Though, Mom often gated us off in the bathroom, because we could play so hard that we were knocking things down in the house. This way we had a whole place to play and didn't have to worry about anything.

We would play, then take a again.. get a drink of water together... play... play more... well, you probably get the idea. When it was nap time, we were happy to go into our little crates and rest, and at night, we were both pretty tired... nice that my Mom has "built in" play friends for me... (and I understand this is a whole list of them coming over the rest of the winter!!!)

Course, we have been doing "serious" work as well. Mom works on my training a little each day, and we try to get out for field trips a few times a week.
These photos were taken on "puppy night", when all the puppies in the Maine Chapter met at the mall. Mom and I were suppose to go last month, but she was sick. So, this was a first for us. I got to meet Logan who is a REAL service dog!! She was very sweet to me, and I hope that one day I will be wearing a "graduation vest" like Logan does!!!!

Logan's Mom uses a "scooter".. so, my Mom wanted me to check that all out!! Again, just being me.. it wasn't any big deal, in fact I was more interested in the goodies that Logan's Mom had in her pocket. But, I walked along the scooter and checked it all out... Mom was very pleased.

I have even had my first field trip to a restaurant!! There is a local "pub" that is very good and "laid back". So, one evening Mom called her friends - Kelli and Rick - and we all met at the "Poor people's pub"... THIS is their idea of "service dogs!!!" a big sign, painted on the front door!!! so, Mom knew it would be a great place to "start".
I was "pretty good"... there was a couple of crackers on the floor that I really would have liked to try, but Mom said I couldn't have them!! After "trying" a bit more.. I gave up and just laid quietly under the table. No one, except for Mom, Dad, Kelli and Rick even knew I was there until we left. As I came out from under the table, several people said... "there's a dog in here??"
So, that pretty much covers what we have been up to over the past month or so. Now that my training is beginning to kick into "high gear".. I will have lots to write about in the up coming months, and Mom has exciting things to do with me. She keeps saying to me that she know our time together is going to go by very quickly.. and she doesn't like to think about that part!!! Until the next blog... I am yours... Chester!!!!