Guide Dog Training – Day 2

Day 2 is dog arrival day. So pretty much the day you are looking
forward to the most. The dog you had been matched with a few weeks
previous is finally handed over and the training feels like it is
underway.

Before the dog arrived we sat through a pre dog talk that consisted of
a rundown of what to do on our first interaction with the dog. No
corrections just enjoy being with the dog and play. Oh and also dog
proof your hotel room. This meant a quick run round and pick up
everything I had put on the floor. When I stay in a hotel I like to
put things on the floor as its usual a big space and it makes it easy
for me to find things. So i quickly went back to my room and picked
everything up.

I sat waiting in my room for the dog to arrive, as I heard the
unmistakable jingle jangle at the door of a dog chain I knew he was
about to come bounding through the door. As soon as he entered he
stormed around the room smelling everything, as the instructor left
the room he took this as an opportunity to take me out! he bounded on
me attempted to pin me down and chew my arm off. This continued for a
minute or so until the taste of me obviously began to be less
appealing.

He toddled off and hung around at the other end of the room. With
instructions not to chase the dog down or give commands or corrections
you have to wait for the dog to return to you. So after a while he
came back gave me a good chew and again toddled off. You quickly
wonder if the dog is going to bond and worry if you are doing things
right.

After a few more minutes he came and sat beside me and want a stroke.
This behaviour of coming over and then hanging out at the other end of
the room continued. Until finally he settled and decided to lay down
in front of me. After a short period on our own the instructor
returned and it was time for the fist obedience training.

Lead attached it was time for our first attempt at obedience. Using
the few commands we had been given it was time to use the routes we
had learnt yesterday and run them with the dog. I took my first steps
out of the door and the dog reacted well minimal corrections needed
and we easily got there and back. We then headed to the group room
and awaited for the other guide dog trainees to enter the room.

It appears Ascot is a little excited around other dogs, he needed
numerous corrections to keep him under control. However as we
repeated these group interactions throughout the day the number of
corrections decreased. Hopefully by the end of the week there will be
no corrections.

Ascot also began to just hang around with me in the hotel room and lay
next to me, in fact as I type this he is laid next to me. So a bond
is beginning to be created.

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