Guide Dog Training – Day 8

Today was our official day off so it was time for us all to have visitors.  I had been looking forward to this day as I hadn’t seen my son in a week or my wife for that matter.

I knew I would have to spend some time calming Ascot down as he is easily excited and incredibly sensitive, I think this is due to his age as he is a very young guide dog.  So we did a nice grooming sessions which involved him nearly knocking me out as he jumped up and smashed into my jaw as I leant over him.  Besides from that it was a nice calming sessions so we did a little obedience too.  Keeping Ascot as calm as I could until my wife and son arrived.

I got the call to meet them in reception and my son was very shy with me.  He is still very young so me going away for a while then being presented with me again I don’t think he knew what to do.  So after about 10 minutes he had warmed to me so we took him upstairs to meet Ascot.  The first meeting didn’t go too well as Ascot predictable got very excited and wanted to play with Grayson.  Grayson didn’t know what to do some avoided him. My wife went in for one stroke and Ascot swirly tried to steal her broach!

We decided to leave Ascot in the room to calm down and head down for some lunch.  Returning up to the room Ascot had calmed down to the point where he was able to interact with Grayson.  Grayson loved this and he say down in front of him with an empty mug and pretended to drink, after each sip he then gave the mug to Ascot so he could have a sip, they played this for a while and Ascot was incredibly patient with him, then he went in for a full on lick attack which Grayson loved!

It really has hit me today how sensitive Ascot is and how I need to manage his moods.  Trying to keep him calm to get the best out of him.  This can often be difficult and lead to multiple corrections forcing me to escalate my tone and correction sometimes to a level I just don’t feel comfortable with.  This results in both me and Ascot becoming upset and we both mope around in the hotel room for a while.  But a quick rest and he is back being chilled out.  I am hoping this is age related and as we grow together we can learn to read each other far better and work as a great team,

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