Day 10: Wal-mart and a night walk
We awoke at 5:45 this morning. No present was waiting for me, fortunately. I busied him and he poopied. We had a
big party.â€ We had breakfast and fed the dogs. Obedience was more practice of distractions during stays and come and finish. At 9:30, we left for Wal-mart. It took us 30 mins. to get there. Once there we busied the dogs and we went in through the store to McDonald’s. In there, we sat and took turns going shopping.
Kate taught me how to walk in the store with a buggy and sighted person. I walk behind the cart with dog next to me, so he is safe from injury and knocking things over. The sighted person stands in front and pulls the cart around.
The best command is Follow. You tap the arm of the sighted person you are going to follow and say, “Follow.” Joe was very good at following. Kate tried to slip away from him, but Joe stayed with her even in crowds. She then took me around and I picked out me some sugar free candies and a Kong hydrant and big Nylabone for Joe. Kate then left us to see how we would do own our own. We could walk around for 10 mins. then head back to McDonaldâ€™s. I walked Joe around departments, in the clothes dept, and in the hat dept. I stopped and pick out a baseball cap to help keep the sun out of my face. I brought one (I am sure my husband is mumbling about that now.), but the humidity has been so bad that we can’t keep the floppy parts from being too floppy. I look like someone one pulled my turtleneck up over my head. That is not safe right now. Anyway I found a $5.00 Levi Strauss hat. Joe sat or followed me around looking at each hat in each bin until I decided on that one. He was perfect. We then headed back to McDonald’s. However, somewhere along the way I got disoriented and could not find McDonaldâ€™s. I was mumbling about needing to find McDonaldâ€™s. Finally, Joe started pulling me hard to turn around. I kept telling him no and trying to focus. Finally, I said ok. Joe take me to McDonaldâ€™s. He led me around bins, through dept. and straight into McDonaldâ€™s and turned left where everyone was sitting. I was amazed. We had a big party. Other people had similar experiences. I don’t think anyone had any trouble. The dogs’ had been here to practice on several occasions. Oh, Joe is perfect!
We came back and did lunch, took a nap until 3:00 and fed the dogs. The dogs were very tired. Obedience at 4:00 was practicing sit/stay and down/stay with distractions. That is a biggie. Our dogs were all distracted today. They wanted to break command for almost anything. Joe finally just wagged his tail and only slightly moved. That was enough for today.
Lecture was more about why we do the commands and a repeat of the life in the Public Eye. See everyone watches us and if they they we did something inappropriate, someone will call us on it by reporting to SE or Humane Societies who report it to SE. Well, we got a real first hand experience today. Daniel was seen doing a push to Alex because he was being stubborn and refused to sit like he was supposed to do. It was not anything that he wasn’t supposed to do, but someone thought he was abusive plus he was heard uttering some utterly horrible word at the poor dog as was reported. Actually the word was a Spanish dialect from Puerto Rico meaning, â€œNo, sit!â€ Daniel wife is Puerto Rican and speaks that a lot at home to help her children be bilingual. We were given a way to deal with a refusal like that which didnâ€™t give quite the same appearance, but told Daniel did nothing wrong and his actions were explained to the caller. People will call faster for a dog than they will a child. I love my dogs and would never want them harmed, but I see a real problem here.
Anyway, after supper, we waited until dark and went back to DTC. I was very nervous, but was trying to keep it in check because of Joe. My nervousness would only confuse him. I couldn’t afford that. Evidently, this neighborhood came to life at night. It was reported as not the worst, but definitely not the best. I was not afraid of that, but I am afraid of the dark. Because of RP, I am totally blind at night. I do not like to go out at night with people much less alone. Well, I need not have worried. First, Joe poopied before went on the route and then he took me safely around all cracks, stopped at all curves, avoided all of those bushes and hanging limbs. He crossed the street with the traffic next to him like an old pro despite a teeny bopper car roaring past. He took me back around the block coming to the DTC from the opposite direction, found the steps and found the door perfectly. I was ecstatic as we had walked at a fair clip around the four block rectangle. I have never felt completely comfortable in the dark anywhere, especially outdoors where every hole, branch, and creature stretched to grab me and pull me to the ground or crawl on me. This was absolutely perfect!
Well, I can’t add anything better. I am still buzzed about my walk with Joe in the dark! I hope I can sleep. Good night.
Day 10: Wal-mart and a night walk