Saturday, November 15, 2014

The Downside of Having a Service Dog in Winter

Besides the stuff that would go along with having a pet dog, like having to take your dog out to pee when it's freezing cold, there are a few things I hate about winter with a service dog. 

Getting in and out of the car takes me longer with Isaac.  What I normally do is put his vest on him while he stands on the backseat, because that way I don't have to bend over like I would if he was standing on the ground.  But I can't do it from inside the car.  I stand outside the car, with the back door open, and reach in and put on the vest.  Which means I am standing out in the cold while I do it.  And it's hard to do it with my gloves on, so I usually have to take them off, so my hands are cold.

I guess I could put his vest on him at home and have him wear it in the car, but normally I don't have him wear it in the car because I think he is more comfortable without it.  I don't know if that's really the case, though.  Maybe I should think about that a bit.

I do leave the vest on him while running errands if we are only driving a short distance.  For instance, if we go to the post office and then to the grocery store, which is maybe a five minute drive if I drive slow, I will leave the vest on in between the two places.  But if we are driving a distance of 20 or 30 minutes or more, I usually take the vest off in the car.

When we get back in the car, he sits or stands on the back seat while I take off the vest.  So again, I am in the cold.

Then there are the potty breaks when running errands.  If we are going a short distance, like to the grocery store five minutes from my house, I will give him a chance to pee before we get in the car at home and not again until we get back home.  If we drive a distance, though, like to a doctor's appointment 40 minutes away, I give him a chance to pee before we get in the car at home and again when we arrive before going into the appointment.  That means instead of hurrying from my front door to the car, or from the car to the building, I have to stand out in the cold, waiting for the pokey puppy to pee.

Winter with a service dog means more time out in the cold.  And I hate the cold.


  1. But you love to complain!

    1. And you apparently love to complain about what I write about in my blog. You do know that if you don't enjoy the content, you aren't required to read it, right?