Friday, September 11, 2009

At the Library and More

Last week Shiloh and I accompanied our roommate on a few errands because her guide dog is healing from a mysterious allergic reaction and there where a couple of incidents in less than an hour that remind me why dressing/ marking your dog visibly as a service dog is so important( I discussed this early this summer).

The first encounter reminded me that I live in a town with a lot of puppy raisers for Guide Dogs for the Blind --This is not a negative commentary on GDB--only observation. Guide Dog puppies here all wear green puppy capes when really small, and green vests as the they get older. Summit Assistance Dogs chose green as their color and as such all Summit Teams graduate with a nice green vest.The vest is now Shiloh's light duty gear; I use it when we are going on quick outings where I will not need her to pull my chair. When Shiloh is wearing her Freedom Design Harness, which is red (soon to be purple though the red one belonged to Bastien), we never get asked if she's in training.

The second incident involved someone else who had a "service dog" in the public library. This was a large Black Labrador that was wearing both an Easy Walk Harness and a Gentle Leader but no vest or patches of any sort and the person's disability was not apparent in any way.She was complaining  because a library employee had come to question her and tell her her dog was in the way (he was laying down sprawled out). The person felt the library employees needed to be better educated and were being unfair to her.Mean while My roommate and I were inline waiting. We got up to the counter and when we were conduction our business the lab began whining loudly and pulling to get to Shiloh.
Lessons here: Chose  your gear carefully and if you Chose not to dress your dog don't be surprised when you get hassled.

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