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We drove up to Santa Rosa for our interview.  I was really impressed by the campus and their level of organization.  I'm not impressed easily. 

Part of the interview involved telling "carpet dog" (Special K says I love "carpet dog") a dog mockup to "sit", "down" and "let's go"aka heel.  I got nervous, because I also had to correct the dog by jerking on the leash and hold the leash a certain way and I was afraid I'd get it all wrong.  I actually didn't do it the correct way, but they said that was okay.  It was a little hard on my wrists.  They said to use what I call my mom voice that I use when I discipline my kids.  Authoratative but not angry.  Something will happen if you don't listen.

Then they brought out Proper who was a cute black lab who seemed all happy to see me.  I thought "oh, no, what if Proper doesn't obey me and I have to correct her a lot."  I didn't use my "mom" voice, the "you'd better obey me or else" because I was too nervous.  But Proper did exactly what I said even when distracted.  She only needed to be corrected once.  I think it was partially she's well trained and also I was so thrilled when she actually did what I said.


( 9 notes — Leave a note )
Mar. 11th, 2007 07:57 pm (UTC)
So Proper was proper? :) Sounds like you will be ok here. I think they just want to check if you can control her should she forget her training etc. Not that that's very likely or anything. Speaking of which, if you'd like to talk to a friend who has a service dog let me know, I have a friend who has one :)
Mar. 13th, 2007 09:44 pm (UTC)
Yeah Proper was proper. :) Can't imagine taking home a dog with that name. But I'll take what I can get.

I'd definitely like to talk to your friend but I need to see what happens next. If we get accepted I'd love to talk to your friend when we go to Team Training about what we might need when we get home. If not :( I'll ask your friend about other organizations.
Mar. 11th, 2007 10:47 pm (UTC)
Awww, is that just a practice dog, or will that be your dog if you qualify?

I'm excited for you. It will be great for you guys to have a dog.
Mar. 13th, 2007 09:46 pm (UTC)
Proper was a practice dog. I think she may go to someone or they may be considering her for breeding. If accepted we go back to Team Training they swap us with 3 or so dogs and then give us a "potential match" on the third day.
Mar. 12th, 2007 05:17 am (UTC)
This is exciting! How many more hoops to jump through?
Mar. 13th, 2007 09:56 pm (UTC)
Well this is the last part of the application process. Although I sent a "thank you" email as I do with all interviews. And the coordinator asked me a couple more questions (not sure if this is good or bad) which I answered. Now we wait to hear if I'm accepted onto their waiting list.

If accepted we wait until we're told a date for Team Training. Then we drive up to Santa Rosa again for Team Training a 12 day intensive training over 2 weeks. They provide us with a room and kitchen facilities. They also have a large campus where the kids can play and a library with a few toys. The firs couple days they have me work with 3 or so dogs and then give me a "potential match" on the third day. Hopefully this dog becomes my match and we graduate in two weeks.

On the last day the dog and I as a team are given a public certification test. If we pass then I can take the dog to any public places a service dog can go like stores restaurants etc. If we fail then the dog is home certified or can just go to places pet dogs can go. If we fail we can try again at the followup.

Then in 6 weeks we have a followup to make sure everything is okay. I'm not sure if this means we have to drive down to Santa Rosa again or a phone call will suffice. It probably depends on how Team Training went.
Mar. 12th, 2007 08:31 am (UTC)
Yay! Good luck!
Mar. 13th, 2007 09:56 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I need all the luck I can get. :)
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Mar. 13th, 2007 10:03 pm (UTC)
Yeah temperament is extremely important to us and the one I can least determine on my own beyond the tests on the Internet. And the tests can't tell you how a dog will cope with our house.

I read online (so accuracy?) that only 40% of the puppies they raise make it to a placement to a person with disabilities. OTOH some of them work in government or other types of jobs and some just become pets.
( 9 notes — Leave a note )