From our trainer, Renee in Austin, who had her first assessment/intake session with Denise and her Terrier, “Lance”. Denise suffers from diabetes, anxiety, and Sjorgren’s Disease (a mild form of lupus) and would like Lance to be trained as a medical alert Service Dog.
“ We met at Denise’s home for our first session. SDIT Lance met all the criteria of the assessment regarding temperament and trainability. Denise will need to work a little with Lance not being distracted by other dogs, but absolutely no aggression was exhibited. His shot records were already obtained and he is on monthly preventative. They had also had him recently groomed at PetSmart, so he is well taken care of. Lance exhibits a close bond with Denise, which is just the ticket. Her two sons in the home and husband are all on-board with doing whatever they can to make the training go well.
We focused on the assessment and on encouraging Denise to have a clear picture of what she would like Lance to do in order to best help her. She will ultimately be teaching him to “Find Help” if she should have a diabetic crisis and then, of course, to bring that help (person) back to her. She feels that Lance is already alerting her when she is having anxiety.
Homework given for the next session was to work on being around the distraction of other dogs while maintaining focus on Denise. She will also get Lance out to the football practice sessions her sons have, thus giving Lance distractions by large crowds and by other dogs. She will also work on a clear picture of what her goal will be with Lance to best help her in the situation of her hypoglycemia and lupus symptoms. Denise will also review and be knowledgeable of the tasks ahead that will be mastered to pass the Public Assess Test. Denise will be ordering the proper vest and equipment. She hopes also to find out about the Flex Account that ideally will help her to pay for the sessions.