Michelle sent me this little “don’t pet the guide dog you moron!” article. Good on the paper for publishing it. It’s sad that the general public needs such reminders, but they’re always welcome.
This little article made me think of two things that happened to me recently. I was sitting on the bus and this woman came on, stopped in front of Trix and I, and started petting Trix. I grabbed her hand and said “Please don’t pet my guide dog,” at which point the woman just walked off without acknowledging that I had spoken.
Her friend gave her a royal tongue-lashing about “That’s a service dog! You don’t touch a service dog!” I grinned from ear to ear, until I heard our resident numbnut pipe up with “I asked her and she said it was ok.” I looked in her direction and said “I never heard you utter one word. If you asked with your eyes, that isn’t good enough, I’m blind.” That woman never said another word on the bus.
I also had a guy run past Trix and I when Trix was peeing, and he kissed at her and said “Hey puppy.” I said “She says hi. She’s off duty, so she can.” At which point he ran over and said “She’s off duty?” and got on his knees and started petting Trix. So, I have to assume that you know the difference, and you thought kissing at her and talking at her when she’s *on* duty was a good idea?
I thank my lucky stars that people haven’t tried to feed Trix as we go by. I’ve had a couple shockers from family when she was off leash, but nobody just randomly ran up to her while working and tried to shove food in her gob. If they did, oh my, there would be steam issuing from my ears.
But I have to also brag about how many parents I saw at Ribfest who told their little munchkins that “That’s a working dog. You don’t pet those dogs.” Whenever I can, I thank those parents profusely. I also swear I heard a teeny tiny kid say “Guide doggy, guide doggy, guide doggy!” Good on you for knowing it’s a guide doggy!
I hope articles like this help to educate a few more of the Australian public.
As an aside, I had to laugh because the comments submit area was completely inaccessible. A person wrote in and complained about the captcha, but that’s not all. Even if you do the captcha, the submit button is completely inaccessible to screenreaders. If anyone can get it to work, let me know how you did it.
Hi again, Michelle. You and Troy keep on truckin’.