Postings by Link

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Service & Therapy Dogs > I want to cry. my service dog bit me!
Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Sun Apr 20, '14 8:46pm PST 
Scooter, that pet peeve actually tells me a potentially different story. Maybe the owner is the only one who does this behavior, and therefore the dog only reacts this way to them and has escalated the behavior with them because their warning signals were not heeded. It is entirely possible the dog wouldn't automatically proceed to biting with someone else. Like I said, it's impossible for anyone here to know for sure because none of us can see the behavior in person, or know the actual history and escalation of the behavior. Of course I am in agreeance that the dog should be evaluated by a professional, but the owner should also educate themselves.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Link, Sun 8:46 pm

Service & Therapy Dogs > I want to cry. my service dog bit me!
Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Wed Apr 16, '14 1:04pm PST 
There is a lot of information missing considering some people's drastic reactions to this situation. What was the severity of the bite? Were there any warning signals given? Do you regularly put your face close to your dog's, and has it shown discomfort when you do this?

Service dogs are still dogs, and any dog can bite. Based on the information given this doesn't sound like a serious bite, and sounds like it was the owner's fault. Dogs don't like close face to face contact, and if this is something that is being done constantly in spite of discomfort of the dog, I wouldn't be surprised if this was just an escalation of warning signals to get the owner's attention to STOP doing this behavior, and I doubt that the behavior would be repeated with a random stranger (not impossible, though this is something only a person with in person experience with this dog could determine). Hopefully the owner listens to their dog's warning.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Link, Sun 8:46 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Difference between an emotional service dog and a pet?

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Tue Feb 4, '14 7:43pm PST 
An ESA is a pet who's presence helps a disabled or elderly person. The disability can be mild or severe. They don't need any training beyond that of a normal pet (i.e. they should be housebroken, not a nuisance, etc), but a doctor or mental health care provider needs to give their support for the use of an ESA. There is no restriction on species (beyond state laws about keeping wild animals), they can be dogs, cats, rats, birds, etc.

A service animal must be individually trained to perform a task(s) or work to the benefit of a person with a life limiting disability. They also must be trained to behave appropriately in public. The mere presence making the person feel better does not count as work or a task. Only dogs, and in some cases miniature horses, can be service animals, unless the state broadens the definition of service animal.
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» There has since been 8 posts. Last posting by Silas, Feb 8 2:04 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Another Suspected Faker

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Dec 27, '13 6:05pm PST 
Dog do I even want to get involved in this again? shrug

I am an OT. I have high standards for my SD, and get many compliments on his training, I've lost count of the number of people who say he's the most well trained dog they've ever been around.

That said, I am pretty lenient on what some people here would label as obvious "faker" behavior. There are many reasons for inappropriate behavior and not all of them are that the dog is a fake SD. These are animals NOT robots, and no animal is perfect. The line comes when you start judging and deciding what YOU think is not okay, without considering what the handler may think or in fact need. For example, I saw a team in Wal-Mart the other day. I live in a very rural area, and this is only the 2nd SD team I have ever seen here. The dog was distracted as soon as it saw Link (not lunging or barking, just distracted), and was obviously not used to working around other dogs. The handler chose to avoid us so she could continue her shopping. Rather than immediately judging this handler and label them as fakers or their dog as an "unsuitable" SD, I took the circumstance into consideration. This is a rural area, it is VERY difficult to find people with stable dogs to train and proof with, especially in an environment that only SDs are allowed in. I was involved with the kennel club here for a time and I still had a hard time with this. So, we can either take our chances and train in unsafe environments around unpredictable dogs and potentially ruin our SD prospects, or, we can do what we can while still keeping our dogs safe, and keep in mind that the chances of running into another SD team in this area are very slim. Personally, I'd rather take a chance of my dog being distracted (Note, NOT aggressive, unsocialized, etc, just not bomb proof/unphased like many SDs in big cities are), for a few moments, then put my dog and my future at risk. This is one example, there are many more that could contribute to a team being put in a situation they did not anticipate and were not able to train for for many different reasons (such as an escalator, traveling on a bus or plane, or going to a zoo when visiting family in a big town, just because you can't conceive of not having access to these things, doesn't mean it doesn't happen).

Unfortunately by having this view, many people would rather say things like this forum "excuses bad behavior" when really IMO most of us are just trying to be UNDERSTANDING, and realize that not everyone has access to the training opportunities schools and professional trainers do, but that DOES NOT MEAN they should not be able to benefit from being partners with a SD, as long as they are reasonable and not working agressive dogs or the like. I did not see anywhere that people were saying to always excuse bad behavior, but that we should at least give the person the benefit of the doubt. That seems pretty reasonable to me.

I recently traveled with my boyfriend to visit his sister in Seattle, something I do not plan on doing again because I do not do well in big cities. I had Link with me of course, because he IS my service dog. He does not have the focus I would like when working around other dogs in SD environments such as grocery stores and restaurants, because we did not have local opportunity to practice this, nor financial ability let alone the health to travel to places where I could do this. Link didn't cause any problems, and he still helped me more than any medication can. This is not something that happens often in my life. Yet, if some of the more judgmental people here (and on certain social network websites) saw us, they may label me as a faker, or my dog as unsuitable for SD work. Neither of those things could be farther from the truth. Where I live and spend 99.9% of my time, Link is impeccable, and allows me to function and participate in life. Yet, some people would judge us based on a few moments of time, and question my right to have a SD. That is not right, and THAT is what I have a problem with when people are so quick to label "fakers."

Certain people on this post are assuming far too much, and are also being incredibly judgemental. All I get from the people defending behavior that may deviate from the norm, is that we should be more understanding. When is more understanding ever bad, and judgemental behavior ever good?
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by Harley, SD, CGC, TDI, Jan 6 10:36 am


Service & Therapy Dogs > Asperger's/High Functioning Autism Service Dogs

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 3, '13 2:14pm PST 
I'm interesting in responses to this as well. I'm thinking about training a SD for my brother who has aspergers and is a brittle diabetic. I know what to train for the diabetes, but no idea as far as the autism side.
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» There has since been 4 posts. Last posting by Griffin - CGC, Dec 4 10:07 pm

Service & Therapy Dogs > Riding the Greyhound Bus
Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Nov 1, '13 11:34pm PST 
Unfortunately it doesn't appear as if we have Megabus in Washington state.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Beowulfs Beauregard CGC CGCA, Nov 17 10:50 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > Riding the Greyhound Bus

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Nov 1, '13 2:27pm PST 
My boyfriend and I are going to visit family this December, and since we both have problems driving we've decided to take a Greyhound bus. It's been a while since I've taken the bus, and it was before I had Link, so I can't remember how spacious they are. How easy would it be to fit a decent sized dog (45 lbs) with fairly long legs? Any advice for taking the bus with a SD?
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» There has since been 5 posts. Last posting by Beowulfs Beauregard CGC CGCA, Nov 17 10:50 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > ADA require paperwork!!

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Nov 1, '13 2:24pm PST 
Oh geez. I've been on this board for years, and the things you are describing are few and far between, and NO ONE is "okay" with fakers. If anything it's the members with a clear and persistent stigma against PSDs handlers and OTs that are driving off the knowledgeable and helpful people who used to regularly post very informative responses to these types of problems. There are always going to be uneducated people who should not be giving advice or information, that doesn't mean they represent a certain community or what they are saying is at all accepted by that community. I for one am glad this will be your last drama filled and over exaggerated post, Nova. wave


Harely, can you tell us more or direct us to info about Canada getting rid of certification? My boyfriend and I have been thinking of moving to Victoria, but honestly the ADA is keeping me here.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by Harley, SD, CGC, TDI, Nov 1 4:27 pm


Service & Therapy Dogs > ADA require paperwork!!

Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Oct 11, '13 9:06pm PST 
Nova, if Dogster attracts a certain "type" with a certain viewpoint that you clearly don't agree with, why do you still come here? It seems like you just want to argue. I also have to wonder at what community of service dog handlers you are getting this information from, I can make a pretty educated guess, though. The very large majority of service dog handlers I know and talk to about certification are very much against it. That being said most of the SD handlers I associate with are fellow PSD handlers, who arguably have the most to lose if certification were to happen.

You are assuming that those that are saying fakers aren't an issue are against certification because they don't really deal with fakers. That is a wrong assumption. I have dealt with many obvious fakers and I am still against certification.

Coming from a family of lawyers you should know better than to make broad statements like that, only a judge can determine if those circumstances would hold under ADA law. I also wasn't saying you were saying certification was needed with authority, I was referring to your claim that you knew exactly what would win in a court of law was, because you simply can't.

You're changing your story from nosing products on a shelf and moving them around to "sniffing a shelf," and barking every minute or two to "an occasional bark." There is a big difference between those behaviors. I don't think most people would have a problem with your latter examples, dogs are not robots and things happen. However, if I were around a claimed service dog that was barking every couple minutes, I WOULD go to a manager or higher up and ask them to ask the handler to get their dog under control or ultimately remove the dog because it is clearly not under control of the handler. Last weekend I went clothes shopping and Link barked (once) in the changing room, he was startled by a loud noise and has never done that before. If someone tried to kick me out then, yes I'd have a problem, but if I couldn't get him to stop barking, IMO they'd be perfectly within the law to ask me to leave, and I'd comply with no issue.

I think this whole faker thing is getting down to nitpicking honestly. If the dog is truly causing a problem then they can legally be asked to leave. If they sniffed a shelf once? Get. Over. It. Life is hard enough without being policed by the goodie two shoes patrol, and no one, human or animal, is perfect. I'm so tired of the judging, and it seems to be coming from a certain segment of the SD handler community which I find incredibly disturbing and disheartening.
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» There has since been 7 posts. Last posting by Harley, SD, CGC, TDI, Nov 1 4:27 pm

Service & Therapy Dogs > New and Searching for General Advice
Link

Hero of Hyrule
 
 
Barked: Fri Oct 11, '13 5:40pm PST 
Nina, I trained my own SD and also had little money for a trainer. What I did was found a local trainer, I found them on craigslist, but they worked at the local shelter and had references. I had a few consultations with them (they only charged $30 an hour), just to make sure I was on the right track, and to get advice on a few things that came up during the training process. I also took and continue to take regular obedience classes. There is a local kennel club that gets together once a week and if you're a member using the building is only a $10 one time fee, so you might look into if you have a kennel club in your area, you'd be surprised how common they are. Training a SD is expensive, but if you educate yourself (which it sounds like you are) and are consistent, I personally think a lot of people can train their own SD without a regular professional trainer, as it is very expensive. I should also add that I had a lot of experience training dogs prior to training my SD Link.

It sounds like Nina is being a pretty typical teenager, I wouldn't worry about it too much, she's still young. Link wasn't ready to work full time until he was about 3 years old (but he's also a border collie and they can take until then to mature mentally). He's also extremely high drive, but very calm while working. I think it is very possible to train a hyper high drive dog to be a SD, but like someone else mentioned, exercise, training, and especially mental stimulation is very important.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by Link, Oct 11 5:40 pm

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