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Service Dogs

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

1:18AM - Service Dog ID's/FAQ Cards/Wallet ID's/Pins

As most of you guys know, I've been having major back issues and have been out of work, and of course, going through a divorce is not cheap on your pocketbook, going from a 2-person income to a meager one-person income. :/

Thanks to dusty_sdit, I fixed the whole 'ACCESS REQUIRED BY LAW FOR SERVICE ANIMALS' thing, so now the new ones just say 'ACCESS REQUIRED BY LAW', even though in the pictures, it's Piper's IDs (my dog), so they say the old thing.

In an attempt to A) BUSY MY MIND WHILE I AM HOME (I'm going crazy guys), and B) Raise some extra cheddar, I'm making Service ID's, FAQ Cards, Wallet ID's, and Now, PINSSSSS. (1 1/4" and 2 1/4")

Even if you don't want any yourself, if you could tell someone you know about them I would be so, so grateful. I really would. I make these all by hand. :) Labor of love!

If anyone wants them and doesn't wanna go through E-bay, LJ-note me- I have paypal and we can do it directly through there.

Before I link the ebay auctions, I will include a picture of Piper with my dad in honor of Father's Day- but please don't tell my dad, he'd flip. He hates The Internet (TM). This is my favorite picture of him and Piper. he loves her, and she loves him.

Okay, so now to the Ebay links.

IDs/FAQ Cards/Wallet ID's:

2 1/4" Pins:

1 1/4" Pins:

Note: If this isn't ok, please delete, and accept my apologies!

Current mood: accomplished

Friday, June 18, 2010

10:41AM - Finally getting my service dog

Hey everyone, so as you might remember I have CP and am non-verbal and this summer I am getting a puppy to train to be my serivce dog. I am owner training, not going through an organization. It's going to be a Labradoodle puppy from a reputable breeder who scan all her dogs for genetic problems and raises them in a family setting (not in cages). I'm going to graduate school next fall so I need to start now. I still have my older dog who is not fond of other dogs but I have solved the problem by having the puppy live at a friend's house until I'm ready to move for school. I will still be taking the puppy 8+ hours a day from my friends house to work on training and socialization. I'm excited and just wanted to tell you guys.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

6:00PM - Labradoodle or goldendoodle?

Hey all
I was wondering if anyone has a labradoodle or goldendoodle as his or her service dog. I’m thinking of them for my next SD and would love to hear about other people’s experience.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

4:02PM - Some clarification needed

Hi Everyone! 

I am doing a presentation for my Ambulatory Care rotation (I am in my final year of pharmacy school) on dogs as healthcare professionals.  I am trying to clarify that I have a correct understanding of the definitions associated with assistance dogs.  It's rather confusing!

Here is what I was lead to understand:
ASSISTANCE dogs are a broad category including Service dogs, Guide dogs, Hearing dogs, Seizure-response dogs, etc.  Does this include Therapy dogs and Skilled Companion dogs?

I have a SERVICE dog named Sunny who is trained to assist me with my physical disability.  The term "service" is most confusing to me.  I know service dogs do not include hearing and guide dogs but what about psychiatric-support dogs?  I was under the impression that seizure-response dogs were considered service dogs also.

Can anyone help me  out?  I don't want to misinform these people!  I've tried looking online but unfortunately it seems that the sites that I would consider the most reputable (ADI, IAADP, etc) either don't spell things out or I just can't find them!  



Thursday, August 13, 2009

10:42PM - Any Northwest Dog Lovers?

Hey there

Not to take away from this lovely group but I would like to extend an invite to dog lovers who live in the Northwest. I figure you can never have enough avenues to share tips, ideas and pictures of your pooches. This one is geared toward all dogs not just service dogs so invite your friends too! My hope is to share reviews about trainers, groomers, get training tips and possibly meet up for some training sessions/play dates.

If your interested come visit the northwest dog community!


Thursday, July 30, 2009

11:16AM - Teaching "get it"

As in, picking something off the floor and giving it to me.

I've been working on "bring it," but he won't do it consistently. And, forget about getting something off the floor unless it's food. We're also having a hard time learning "hold it." He'll "take it," but then he won't hold it, he'll just drop it. So, we have lots to work on...any tips?

I have the Teamwork II DVD, and have been trying to use some of the techniques mentioned in there, but it doesn't seem to be getting through. Help!

Friday, July 17, 2009

9:52PM - Real or a Scam?


Anyone have any knowledge about the Service Animal Registry of America?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

11:13AM - New dog

Hey –
I’m looking to acquire a service dog from a organization. The issue is in my house there lives a 12-year-old lab who is dog selective. I know service dogs are bombproof but I’m worried that the older dog will teach the new dog to be dog aggressive. Am I right to be concerned? Should I want until I move?

Friday, June 26, 2009

2:41PM - Service dogs in Italy

I thought this was the best place to ask. My friend and her boyfriend are going travelling around Italy but she has a gsd/malinois mix seizure dog. With Italy's attitude to dogs she wasn't sure if she could take him or what restrictions he would be under when they were there. I was wondering if you guys knew or knew any websites where she could find out. Thank you.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

1:40PM - Bringing a puppy into a dog-aggressive home

Here's the situation. I am currently living with my parents and we have a super sweet lab who's 14 years old and somewhat dog-aggressive. She really doesn't like female dogs or dogs who get up in her face. She has lived successfully with another small male dog and a male pit bull. The dilemma is that I will be moving soon and when I move I have been planning to get a puppy to train as my service dog. I just found the best little 6 month old puppy on earth from a rescue shelter and I really don't want to miss out on him just because its going to take an extra 3 months to move. The puppy is in foster care and has been living with an adult dog. My parents have a fenced in yard and all that good stuff. But I am worried about the safety and happiness of both Annie (the older dog) and the puppy. My dad is taking a break from work so he would be available to help me train and integrate both dogs and I have a professional trainer. My parents and I think that it might be possible to integrate them slowly. I would be with the puppy all day so I could train him and make sure he is safe. I am just nervous about the two dogs getting along. Is it realistic to think that an older dog aggressive dog could be integrated into having a puppy in the house? Is Annie going to be really jealous of the special bond my puppy and I will have? Thanks for your advice.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

11:48PM - PSDs

Hi! I'm looking into training my first psychiatric service dog. I think I have a great candidate, a 10 month old GSD. :] I just have a few questions!

I guess I should start out by saying I plan to owner train with a dog trainer I trust, although he has never trained a service dog. The GSD is his. He has had him since a tiny pup and has taught him basic obedience plus a few other things. I plan on having my psychiatrist write a letter for me stating that I have a disability and he supports my choice to have a PSD. I'm also going to have the trainer work up a contract and write a letter when the dog I choose is fully trained.

I was wondering the about the law surrounding service dogs, specifically PSDs, in Illinois. I've looked it up but I'm still confused. One site said I needed to have a dog obtained and certified from a school, but I know the "general" law is that a dog does not need to be certified. In Illinois can I not have a owner trained service dog? There was also NO mention of PSDs on this site. I couldn't even begin to navigate the states site. Haha. Does anyone have a clear outline of Illinois state laws regarding PSDs? I'm aware that the dog needs to be trained to do tasks and not just "comfort" me.

Another concern I had is a bit silly. I believe that I have a disability. I was evaluated (extensively!) for Social Security Disability payments and I receive them every month. My doctor agrees that I am disabled. I'm afraid someone is going to dispute this somehow. I've read that I can have my SSI taken away and such. Do I have anything to really be worried about?

Also, I've read pros and cons of training your own service dog. Most of the cons revolving around not knowing how to properly handle a service dog in public. Has anyone had a negative experience owner training with a professional dog trainer? Would it really be best to get a dog from an organization? If you've successfully owner trained what resources did you use to learn the ins and outs of service dog etiquette? I also know that the dog I choose may not make it through training because while he looked like the right dog at first he just isn't the right guy for the job. I'll have a backup plan in that case.

My last question is related to my current dog and cats. Does anyone have any experience bringing in a service dog when you already had other pets at home? My dog is not a candidate for me for various reasons. I worry that she'll feel..left out. (I know that sounds ridiculous..) Has anyone had this problem?

I believe I could benefit so much from a PSD. I lost my job and my life because of my PTSD and Bipolar. I just don't want to go about this the wrong way. I've been researching for about six months, waiting for the right dog to pop up. Any tips you could give me would be welcomed! Thanks!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

2:48AM - Training for the escalators

We have a big new Target near where I live, which is pretty much just a Target with a parking garage, and the store is upstairs - there's no "ground level," and it's not pretty, or huge, or much different from any of the other stores in the area.

However, it crossed my mind while I was there that a skill Howie should learn is to go up escalators. I have a nervous fear of them myself, since when I was 5 I got a shoe lace caught in one and I got stuck. It was bad. I've been working on it, but I still hesitate, waiting for that perfect moving step to emerge from the floor.

However, these are lifesaver to me, because I can often get tired out after walking around a mall or a store and climbing stairs is just exhausting.

So, how do I go about training my dog to ride stairs that are moving? Any tips?

He's not quite ready for going out in public, but I thought about scoping out a quieter day at the mall to go work on the escalators there. Although, in the middle of the day, this particular Target was fairly slow, too.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

3:40PM - service dog in training

Hey All,

So I am curious what service dogs in training can do. I.E: can they go in stores, etc.? Basically, what's the difference between a service dog in training and a service dog ( besides being in training)? In about 6 weeks I am getting a puppy that I am hoping to train as my service dog. (Please no flack about owner trained service dogs, I know what I am doing and have a trainer to help.) But I don't quite understand what a "service dog in training" is.



Sunday, March 1, 2009

11:58AM - Qualifies for service dogs

Hey all –
I just joined the community. A little background about me: I’m 26, have quadriplegic cerebral palsy, and am nonverbal. I don’t currently have a service dog but within the next 4 months, I plan to adopt a pitbull puppy and self-train him/her. I want to self-train for two reasons – the breed I want and the fact that many service dog organizations require nonverbal people to be with a guardian at all times which is utterly ridiculous. I want a 5-10 month old and I want to rescue my dog. I plan to email a couple rescue organizations and ask them to keep an eye out for that “perfect puppy”. I know the basic qualities to ask for – alertness, intelligence, people focused, good health, etc – but what else should I ask for. I have been working with dogs for 15 years and have extensive experience with pitbulls.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


I entered a scholarship contest called "What's Your Passion" and wrote about my service dog. Will you vote for it? You can vote every day!

Monday, November 17, 2008

6:08PM - Service Dog aggressions?

I was in the Disney Store in Washington State, and I use a service dog, and she is very well behaved (and I do have a prescription for her).
Well, a woman came into the store with her Labrador on a D-Ring guide harness, and her dog went balistic after my dog. She kept snapping the dogs collar (a slip collar/choke chain). My girl did give a bark, but that was it. This woman was NOT blind, but using a guide harness. The dog was NOT in training (I had my friend ask the owner). She said it was a service dog, full and complete. Yeah, right, and I'm the president of the United States.
Umm, what can be asked...a business can ask if the dog is a service dog, but not what the handlers disability is. Um, well, the other problem is that yes, people will go on Ebay and buy these guide harnesses, and pass off pets as service dogs, but not respect those who really need and use service dogs.
I know at times I wish that I did not have the dog at my side 24/7. But she is my lifeline, so, like an oxygen tank, I cannot be seperated from her for more than a few moments.

Current mood: aggravated

Friday, July 11, 2008

12:11PM - House Training For Your Golden Retriever by Charles Amith

House Training For Your Golden Retriever
 by: Charles Amith
When you begin house breaking your golden retriever, you should follow a strict routine. Before your pet is properly trained, it's very important that your gold retriever does not spend too much time outside of it's crate. If your pet is roaming around your home, you should watch it carefully. Don't be upset at your pet if it relieves itself in an unwanted area. Your pet is your responsibility!
Training your golden retriever in your home is almost like training a child. In the morning, show your dog where to go. Designate that one location for relieving him or herself. Once your pet does, praise it. Let your pet know that it has urinated or pooped in the correct place.
While your in this training process, you don't want your pet to roam wherever it wants. Neither do you want to let it outside of it's crate when it wants. When an accident happens too much, it could become a habit. Pet's don't learn from their mistakes too easily. You have act like a parent and guide your pet and avoid these accidents as much as possible. Even though your pet might not fee too comfortable going through this process, it's important that you train your pet right so the good actions become good habits.
If you give him too much freedom, your golden retriever could relieve itself on the floor. This might seem like a small thing. You could always clean up the mess and expect it to not happen so easily again. However, this is a major mistake. After you clean up the urine, you might not think that there's anything there. However, there's a good chance that your dog could smell it. This could trigger the action of peeing. So when he smell that area, your dog may identify this as the normal area to relieve itself. Having your dog relieve itself in the right location is very important.
If possible, it would be a good idea to allow your dog a passage, such as a dog door, to go outside. If you're training your golden retriever to relieve itself outside, you should use a litter box or a wee-wee pad at the designated location. If you don't have a outside passage, having wee-wee pads (also known as underpads) will be sufficient in an indoor environment. These can allow your dog to easily identify where it should go incase it has to go.
The process of house breaking your golden retriever could be time consuming, as well as frustrating. It's important that you praise your dog and follow a strict regiment. Treat him like he's a part of the family. Once your dog is properly trained, things will be much easier. So make sure your pet is properly trained!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

10:32AM - BSL and assistance dogs


I have a question. Many people work with breeds such as a German Shepherd or the Doberman as their assistance dog.
When entering areas of the country where BSL (breed-specific legislation) has been enacted, what are your rights as a person with a disability working a dog who is of a banned breed?

I am currently training Laveau; a Lab Doberman mix. I realize that I do not have rights to places of public accommodation with her under the ADA until she is fully trained and don't plan on taking her to any areas where BSL has been enacted until she has been fully trained. I am trying to find a list of places in the US and Canada where Dobermans and or Doberman mixes have been banned so that once she is fully trained I can be extra aware in those locations.

Seeing as how the use of GSDs are so popular, has this been a problem for anyone before? Are there any documented cases where a PWD and an SD who is of a banned breed entered a city where there was a problem?

Thanks so much for any advice you can share on this matter.

Current mood: sleepy

Saturday, July 5, 2008

9:11AM - Dog obedience training

Dog obedience training
 by: Ted Belfour
Which dog owner won't feel proud of his disciplined dog? Reversely, who won't feel ashamed of an unruly dog? It is very important for your dog to be absolutely obedient to commands of his owner. You can't expect your dog to be obedient by birth or nature. You have to take pains to make him understand obey your commands.
Obedience training to your dog can be imparted in many ways - two of the more popular methods are typically carrot and stick methods. First method heavily depends on the stick or punishment approach. Second method deals with the reward system for the dog.
Leash and collar method of dog obedience training has survived for a long time now. It is primitive but still mostly followed. The premises of this training method are based here - leash will be the mode of communication with the dog. Dog must understand the commands, and if not obeyed to, leash should be put to action. Using leash alone is not sufficient - dog must be made aware of the good and bad behavior. Once tracked on the path to bad behavior, dog can be punished with the leash.
Reward system doesn't believe in punishing the dog. It follows psychological approach to deal with dog training. Dog is made to know the good parts of behavior and rewarded for the same. His ugly behavior is neglected in the form of psychological treatment. The trainer or owner walks away from the dog immediately after the show of bad behavior. Dog is an intelligent animal to understand the difference between the bad and good behavior.
Whatever technique is used for dog obedience training, it is important to know that the training must be consistent. Dogs get easily confused due to double standards employed. If you expect your dog never to jump on the bed, never let or invite him on the bed. Ensure that your dog never reaches the bed.
Obedience training starts on the fundamental issues like sitting, standing, walking, listening to your commands & following those, sitting in the car, etc.
The dog owner can easily impart obedience training. You may find alternates to this by getting your dog enrolled with some obedience classes or dog instructor. Evaluate all the training techniques, methods, equipment, infrastructure, experience, etc before taking the final decision on outside help. Remember, the most ideal way will be yourself to be the instructor. Your dog will love it.

Monday, June 9, 2008

4:11AM - Why is an All Natural and Holistic Approach to Pet Food Gaining Importance?

Why is an All Natural and Holistic Approach to Pet Food Gaining Importance?
 by: Fred Ege
Why is an All Natural and Holistic to Pet Food Gaining Importance?
There is a significant increase in the market share of Natural and Holistic Pet Food, and it is predicted to double over the next five years. But why the sudden increase in our pets health? It seems that as we become more concerned with our own family's health and what we eat, it's natural to also be more concerned about what our pets eat, as they have truly have become part of our families. Today, it is now easier to provide a complete healthy meal for our pets. In fact, our pets may be eating better than we are!
What to Expect from All Natural and Holistic Pet Food?
1. Switching to All Natural and Holistic Pet Food, produces substantial results over time. We all are accustomed to using synthetic drugs which can stop symptoms quickly. But, in many cases, the problem reoccurs because it was treating the symptons, not the problem. Holistic Pet Foods provide an environment that allows the body to health itself, not just treat the symptoms. This results in a more permanent cure and a healthier pet.
2. A good, high quality diet is the foundation of your pet's health. What we find in the market today for our pets, often contain chemical additives that can be detrimental to their health. Many commercial premium foods contain chemicals known to be toxic, as well as low quality meat that is not fit for human consumption. Many of the ingredients are hard to digest, so the nutritional value is diminished becuase it doesn't reach their bloodstream. An animal's immune system is worn down over time because of poor diet and the lack of a complete balanced diet doesn't foster a long life. There has been a significant increase in kidney and liver failures in young dogs and cats that has recently been linked to the amount of chemical preservatives. That's why the FDA recently recommended the manufactururers of pet food cut the amount of certain chemical preservatives in half. Our pets eat the same food everyday, so the food they eat will have a heightened effect over time on their health, that's why a good, high quality diet is best for your pet's health.
Domestic pets are descendents of animals that have been existing in the wild. Many vets feel that pets should eat natural and less processed food. They recommend feeding pets fresh food with some supplements, or choose an all natural or holistic pet food. Your choice is to select the healthiest food for your companion pets.
What is All Natural and Holistic Pet Food?
Of course, we know that the proper mix of protein, vegetables, carbohydrates, and fats are needed for a healthy diet for our pets. Along with the 23 essential amino acids, pets also need vitamins and minerals. But the types of proteins, vegetables, carbohydrates, and fats is what holistic pet food is all about. Holism is the theory that animals should be viewed as interacting, complete entities, that are more than the sum of their elementary particles. Holistic food is naturally balanced, and provides the pet's body with much more than just the sum of its ingredients. Each ingredient is chosen for not only it's nutritional value, but also for it's interaction with other ingredients. In selecting ingredients, manufacturer's must know how an ingredient aids digestion, and select the ones that provide the most health benefits. Many ingredients are known to be good anti-oxidants, so why not choose an ingredient that has that added value. Then the combination of ingredients as a whole can be evaluated to understand the total value of a complete and balanced diet.
Holistic pet food manufacturers choose the most digestible meats, vegetables and carbohydrates so that the nutrients are almost 100% bio-available, meaning that it actually gets into their bloodstream. If it is a meat that can't be easily digested, then it just passes through their digestive system, and less is really available. The sources of proteins, vegetables and carbohydrates are just as important as the amounts. We also know that certain meats, vegetables and carbohydrates are prone to produce food allergies, and therefore it makes sense to avoid using those ingredients which are known to have a high incidence of digestive problems or allergies.
Given that we can determine the proper mix of ingredients, it also makes sense that we should utilize the best available ingredients for your pet and avoid using questionable ingredients such as by-products or meat digest. The source of the ingredients should be held to the highest standard of human grade food, and as natural as it can be. That means meat that is free from contamination from animals that were not given steroids, antibiotics or hormones, and to avoid meat by-products or meat digest. Vegetables should be free from pesticides or herbicides. We should avoid known food allergenic ingredients (beef, wheat, or soy), and not use chemicals preservatives, dyes, or genetically modified organisms. Holistic pet foods come as close to organic in nature without any chemicals or drugs, or as we say, "The Very Best for Your Best Friend!"

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