Puppy walking

An adventure in looking after a puppy until it is old enough to be properly trained as a guide dog for the blind.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Hot dog, tongue on the floor
Today was a PW supervisor visit. It is SO hot out there ("how hot is it!?") that we went to Bayshore again where it is air conditioned. [It is just past 11am as I write this and the temperature is at 31C and the humidex at 44C. Phew.] Sheila thought we might see some other puppies there and sure enough we did. There was a yellow Lab in training, two black Labs and a black standard Poodle. We successfully avoided each other physically, although all the dogs did make eye contact at one point or another. Sheila was so proud of Rockwell - when she gave him the command to "leave" the other dog alone, Rockwell did and continued on in a straight line.

The most fun we had was when we walked into the Bay, near the make-up and perfume section. She had chosen that section of the store because the floor there is a highly polished dark glassy tile and some dogs balk at walking over it, like it was water or something. I predicted Rockwell would just glance down at it, at the transition and then continue nonchalantly - and he did! However we turned one corner and were walking down an aisle when he spotted three female mannequins wearing only underwear at the end of the aisle. He stopped and stared and then barked at them! We started laughing quietly and he barked again, with his hackles starting to go up. He obviously saw them as people - but NOT people.

Just as the MAC makeup guy came out to see what was going on and I was explaining to him (Sheila was over by the mannequins, explaining them to Rockwell), Rockwell sat down "plump" on the floor and stared up at the mannequins, inviting them to play. It was the most adorable thing we've seen in a while and the MAC guy loved it too.

Rockwell rode up and down in the glass elevator and was not bothered by any of it, not even the fact that the elevator "talks". He walked up and down the open stairs and everything else we asked of him, with professionalism. He still tried to snag Kleenexes if he saw them lying on the floor and his chase reflex is high when it comes to bits of plastic blowing across the floor, so we have to work on that. But we were proud of him. Sheila says he might even be called into training in as little as two months, depending on what other dogs are doing. My little puppy is growing up!

7 Comments:

At 1:15 PM, August 01, 2006, Anonymous Carmen said...

Oh Julia!
Congratulations! That means all your hard work is paying off. You must be so proud of Rockwell!!!
Job well done!

 
At 3:28 PM, August 01, 2006, Blogger Patience said...

Wow, congratulations Rockwell and Julia on how far you have come already!

It's funny how you don't see it when you're with a dog (or even reading about them) everyday.

Sam and Patience

 
At 10:14 AM, August 02, 2006, Blogger JuliaR said...

Thanks Carmen, we are pleased with his progress, even if it doesn't show all the time. :)

Sam, you are sure right when you say you don't notice things when you see a dog every day. That's why I kept saying "baby steps".

 
At 9:17 PM, August 03, 2006, Blogger Tigersan said...

Me love "baby steps."

Unfortunately, me can't remember which way me was going... so me can never really get anywhere ;)

Keep up the good work :)

 
At 1:11 PM, August 04, 2006, Blogger JuliaR said...

Pretty cute puppy pix, Tigersan! Welcome to my blog.

 
At 4:39 PM, August 17, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe how big Rockwell is getting! I also know what you mean by having him on your feet with those big paws. Jessie does that too. She has lost a lot of weight and I don't like to see her hungry. I give her small treats and carrots. She is too old, like me, to have to worry about a little extra weight.

Loved the last postings and will miss them when your charge has to leave for university training, but you will be feeling very proud of your accomplisments in getting him this far. He is a lovely specimen.

Watching the Westminster show, I saw the Golden Retriever get a smack in the face being led away as a loser. Made me want to kill.
B.

 
At 6:55 PM, August 18, 2006, Blogger JuliaR said...

Thanks B. When Uma got really old, we didn't worry about her weight so much any more. But we didn't let her get horribly fat either as that would have made her life even more difficult, especially with the arthritis.

 

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