Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Day 2 at "Dog Camp"

No, I don't have my dog yet! What a whirlwind two days it has been! I actually got "lost" on the way to the DogGuides Training Facility, but fortunately not too too lost - I just went off the QEW one exit at Exit 118 thinking that I had missed Exit 117, when, in fact I hadn't gone far enough! I was sure the exits were in ascending numerical order, when, in fact they were in descending order.
I settled into my room - nice, big, very accessible but ran into difficulty accessing the Internet (it only just happened now - Tuesday, October 27 at 8:00 p.m). I met my five SSD (Special Skills Dog) classmates at dinner, but certainly got to know them a bit better at our first session last night, and again at class today.
Jerry, from Cobourg, is a retired CA, and uses a motorized wheelchair. Joanie, from Windsor, is a single parent with two grown sons, and a nine year old daughter - she has fibromyalgia (and lots of other problems!) and uses a manual wheelchair. Diane is 51, from Penticton BC, has an acquired brain injury, grown children, divorced from her husband after twenty-seven years of marriage and uses a motorized wheelchair. Alex is from a small town in Alberta, is in Grade 11, very small in stature, who uses a walker to move very slowly and awkwardly, and who is here with his mother. Michelle is 27, a graphic designer in Toronto, originally from Sault Ste. Marie,who has some sort of serious body abnormality/configuration and uses a large scooter. And then there is me,probably the oldest at 61, and, I believe, the only MSer in the crowd! We meet our dogs tomorrow, having been given the leashes and "Haltis" (Gentle Leads) today. We also did a lot of practice commands and movements with our human trainers, Tracy and Paulette, acting as dogs this morning, and then we worked with actual dogs this afternoon - but not the ones that have been chosen for each of us! Our practice dogs were either the trainers' personal dogs, or ones still in training for the next session! Good night - tomorrow is going to be quite the day!


  1. This feels like Christmas Eve! I am so excited to hear more about your new dog and the training process. You will have to hold a clinic for all the new puppies in the neighbourhood to get us up to speed.


  2. I'm finding this fascinating already Linda and you don't even have your dog yet. I look forward to meeting him/her.