An update from our trainer, Brenda, who is a paraplegic in a wheelchair and has a remarkably trained SD, Murray!! Brenda trained with Dennis, who was initially introduced to us by his pastor of 40 years, Mr. Adam Cork. He compassionately wrote:
“Dennis, who has been in a wheelchair for decades, just lost his dog of many years (not Service Dog trained) which has been very hard on him. His physical condition is declining. While he is still very independent, decline in his shoulders and decades in the chair are taking a toll. I think it would be good for him to have a Service Dog now to encourage him and provide a level of assistance.”
What a beautiful, caring Pastor who sought help for one of his congregation!!
Brenda has trained twice with Dennis and his dog, Lilly now, so that Lilly can become a Service Dog. She writes:
“At our first visit, Dennis and I met and went through the Public Access Test commands that we could do inside, as it was dark. Lilly completed #3, which is ‘controlled entry through a doorway’, #4, which is ‘heeling through a building’, and #9, which is eating at a table with Lilly in a down position under the table’ with ease. She is extremely obedient, even without treats; it’s out of pure love. The specialized tasks that Dennis wants Lilly to do are bracing, pulling, and offering comfort. I tested Lilly out with bracing like I do with my SD, Murray. Lilly was unable to keep her bottom up while bracing, which we will have to work on.
At our second session, we worked on outside PAT commands. Lilly did #1, which is ‘controlled unload out of a vehicle’ and #2, which is ‘approaching the building’ perfectly the 1st time, as Dennis has been taking her on rides. Dennis then took Lilly off lead, had her ‘sit/stay’, and rolled farther than 6ft with his back to her, turned and waited, then called her to him! He rolled up and down his driveway several times with her off lead, and was making sure she maintained the ‘heel’ position. Lilly was not distracted by anything, and was focused on Dennis. She is so easy to work with, and it only takes her a few times to understand what is expected of her. Dennis leashed her back up to see about pulling safely. Lilly did great, with minimal coaxing!”