Because I can’t stop doing these dog posts, and because people seem to like them, here’s another list of things that happen to me/things people say to me while Trixie and I are zooming around.
1. Someone actually said to me, “Wow! She knows what right and left mean? How cool is that?” Um, if she didn’t, how could I direct her where to go while still letting her prevent me from running into stuff? Most dogs get led around by the leash. But she is leading me, that’s what a guide dog would do. But I still have to be the one deciding where we’re going, so we have to communicate somehow. Now that I write this out, it does seem a little more complicated than it did it first when my gut reaction was to think, “duh!”
2. As I rode up the elevator with my neighbours, adults, not kids, the man said to me, “So when do we get to pet her?” When? You think you’re entitled to get to pet her? It sounded like a kid saying, “Can I have cake now, mommy?” I understand when kids say something like that, but it really shocks me when an adult says it. That, to me, is even worse than someone asking to pet her. This is almost like a demand. She’s very cute, I know, but she’s also very keen to meet new people, and that’s not what she’s supposed to do while she’s working. All I could manage was, “Um, er, I don’t know. Time will tell, I guess.”
3. Kids are hillarious. As I’ve walked into the drugstore, or onto a bus, I’ve had not one, but two kids turn to their mothers and say, “What? Why is she bringing that dog in here? I can’t bring our dog in here!” There is so much disgust and “That’s not fair!” in it that I have to wonder if they’re the middle child. And I also can’t stop giggling. Ah kids and pure honesty.
4. This one always hurts, because it’s usually said after she has given someone a good ol’ sniffing, tried to eat something off the ground, or done something else equally doggy and non-guide doggy. “Is she still in training?” Gulp. Well, yes and no. A guide dog is always in training, or they lose what they’ve already learned. But she’s fully certified as a guide dog. I keep telling myself this is because she’s a wee dog, so everyone still thinks she’s just a puppy, and that’s more the issue than what she just did to embarrass me. But it still makes me turn just a tad red. Other variations are “Oh, she’s still a puppy is she?” or “Is she doing better today?” or my personal favourite, “Is she trained?” All I can think when that one gets spat in my direction is wow, she’s that bad that she’s made you wonder if she’s just a pet dog and I’ve decided she should play dress-up today. Then I think how could it be a good idea to give people untrained dogs and have them mascarade as guide dogs? That would be, um, disastrous!
I think that’s about it for now. But I’m sure I’ll have more later as we make our way. Hope I don’t sound like an asshole. I don’t want to make people afraid to say stuff. Just some of it sounds silly to me, but maybe that’s easy for me to say when I’ve gone through all the training.