Monday, August 22, 2016

Rough Day at the Dog Park

Isaac had a rough day today at the dog park.

First, he got into an argument with his buddy Clyde. They normally get along well, and Clyde was in a great mood when he arrived at the dog park this morning. Clyde's owner was sitting on a stump in the sun while Clyde was strolling around sniffing things, so Isaac decided it was a good time to go get some loving from Clyde's owner. Isaac ended up practically in the guy's lap, kissing him, which is not unusual for Isaac. However, Clyde took exception to that and gave Isaac quite a stern talking to about it. Isaac looked rather intimidated, but they later made up.

Then this guy came with two dogs I'd never seen before. Isaac expressed an interest in humping one of the dogs and the dog did not wish to be humped. Isaac backs off as soon as a dog tells him to, but this dog went after Isaac ever after Isaac had backed off. The owner had to grab the dog and pull him off Isaac. Isaac was not hurt at all, just had some slobber on his face from the dog, but he was pretty shaken up.

The owner then took his two dogs down to the lake - where his dog promptly attacked another dog! I don't know what is wrong with some people. If your dog is aggressive, he should not be at the dog park!

Isaac is feeling better now. He had half a hot dog in his Kong.

Friday, August 12, 2016

93 Degrees

Today on my way into the food pantry, I saw someone had left a dog in their car. It was 93 degree here today, much too hot for a dog to be in the car. I went inside and asked, loudly, whose dog it was and no one answered. I announced, loudly, that it was too hot for a dog to be in the car and that the owner needed to take care of their dog or I would need to call the police. No one stepped forward, although several people agreed with me that it was too hot.

I went back outside so I could see the license plate and got out my phone to call the police. Before I could dial, a man came out and headed toward the car. I asked if it was his car, he said yes, and I told him it was too hot to leave his dog in the car. He was mad and grumbled at me, but he got in his car and drove away.

Later, a volunteer with the food pantry said she had figured out who the owner of the dog was and that she told him he had to take his dog home. She told him that he could come back without his dog and they would be happy to serve him. I guess he didn't want to take the dog home and she told him that not only would they not serve him while his dog was out in the car, but that if he didn't take his dog home, she would be calling the police. That's when he left.

Three other volunteers thanked me for speaking up when I saw the dog in the car.

It was so hot.  In addition to the heat, the humidity was high.  Isaac and I had to wait about five minutes for the friend that goes with me to the food pantry to get finished, and I had the car doors open, provided him with a bowl of water, and was cooling him down with a spray bottle of water.  I would not leave a dog in a car for five minutes in this weather.  And it took about 45 minutes to get through the food pantry today.  I think that guy's dog would have been dead by then.

Friday, August 5, 2016

All in a Day's Work

So today I was at Kroger and my favorite brand of almond butter was on sale but there was none on the shelf. So I found a manager, and it so happened the manager of the store was walking around with the district manager, and they ended up giving me a larger jar for the sale price of the small jar. So I got a 16.99 jar of almond butter for 5.99.

But while I had them both there, I brought up something I'd wanted to talk to the manager about anyway, which is customers leaving their dogs in cars when it's hot out. Obviously it's not their fault if customers are stupid, but yesterday I called the cops for the third time this summer about dogs in cars in the Kroger parking lot. I asked them what employees were supposed to do if they saw dogs in cars, like when they are out collecting carts, and asked if employees knew what they are supposed to do.
 
Both managers were really receptive and immediately said "We can educate employees!" So they are supposed to be training employees to watch for dogs in cars and to notify a manager if they see them. Then the manager will attempt to locate the owner and if necessary, call the police to take care of the situation.

So I was really happy with all of that. As I was talking with them, Isaac was sitting really nicely, looking pretty, being quite and well-behaved. And then... all of a sudden, I smelled something awful. And remembered. I gave Isaac rawhide last night.

I apologized for my dog's awful gas. They both graciously said "Oh, it's fine, it doesn't matter, it's not so bad." They lied. It was bad. Real bad.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Isaac's Dog Park Song

I often make up little songs to sing to my animals. They do not care that i cannot carry a tune in a bucket.

Well, Isaac's latest song is sung as we approach the dog park. It is set to the tune of "All the Gold in California." If you don't know the song, have a listen.

Isaac's dog park song goes like this:

"If you're gonna play with doggies
don't hump 'em because they don't like that
and then you won't get to play"

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Access Disputes on Vacation, Part I

On our recent camping trip, I experienced more access disputes with Isaac than I had experienced in the entire time I'd had him up 'til then.  And that is not an exaggeration. 

We were camping at a national park.  I would have thought they see plenty of visitors with disabilities.  Most of the facilities were pretty accessible and they certainly get a lot of traffic.  And they are government employees.  They should comply with federal laws, right?

Well.  The Americans with Disabilities Act doesn't apply to the National Park Service but section 504 of the Rehab Act does and it says pretty much the same thing.  And the National Park Service has issues a statement saying they have aligned their policies regarding service dogs with the ADA.  But apparently their employees have not all gotten the message.

One day we ate lunch in the hotel that is in the park.  Now, the hotel is not actually operated by the NPS, it's a concession, and therefore the ADA does apply.  Note that I was not able to determine this until after I'd returned home and made multiple phone calls and found someone in charge of something who could tell me this.

But anyway.  The hostess told me that dogs were not allowed in the restaurant.  I told her that he was a service dog so he was allowed.  She said not in the restaurant because they serve food.  I told her that the ADA says he is allowed.  She kept saying she didn't think so.  Another employee went ahead and seated us. 

After I'd ordered, I got on my phone and looked up the ADA Business Brief and then went back to the hostess to show her the law.  She didn't want to look at it and told me she'd asked another employee who had told her service dogs are allowed.  I asked her if her employer had not provided training on the ADA and she said she'd been told service dogs were allowed in the hotel but not in the restaurant.

And that was only the first access dispute of the three I experienced that day.