Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Distracted Doggie? Doh!

A couple days ago, Isaac and I were in Starbucks.  We were waiting for someone that, it turns out, stood me up.  Whatever.

I ordered a skinny vanilla latte and was waiting for the barista to make my drink.  There were two women with a toddler in a highchair at a nearby table.  One of the women asked, "Are you training him?"

I gave my standard answer.  "Nope.  He's already fully trained."

She looked a bit surprised and/or confused and said, "He's already fully trained?"

I said, "Yes."

The other woman then asked, "What program did you get him from?"

I told her.  She told me how someone she knows is a puppy raiser for some guide dog program, I forget which one.

Then she said, "I'm not supposed to talk to him, am I?"

I said, "No.  It distracts him."

She looked at Isaac, who was busy staring out the big glass window.  "Hmmph," she said.  "Looks like he's already distracted by something out there."

Well...sort of.  The comment caught me off guard.  I decided not to try to explain that looking out the window when I am not doing anything that requires his assistance is not the same as being distracted by someone petting him and talking to him.  But it's not the same.  Not at all.


  1. Mzybe you should give some kind of a seminar at your local community center about service dogs to help the public to understand "the rules." That might ease your frustration.

    1. Well, some public education is definitely needed. I did have the opportunity last fall to speak at a church about service dogs. I think speaking at schools would be a good idea. I've known a few other people with service dogs that got to talk to kids at schools and one woman said she then passed out stickers to the kids that said something like "Ask me about service dogs!" Kids love to share things they've learned so that would be a good way to spread the word.