Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Meeting the mail carrier

A blast from the past for the picture today...a Score-pup pic!
Bryce went out and met the mail carrier today...so he can cross two things off his socialization checklist...a mail carrier, and gloves, since she was wearing latex gloves (to sort the mail). He was all wiggly and happy to see her...a very good meeting!

It's important for all dogs, to be introduced to people in uniform and people that work around the house. Most of us know a dog that barks at the mail carrier...my own sister, Inara, is crazy when she comes to deliver the mail. (Mom's nipping that little habit with the help of the Control Unleashed, Look At That game) It's much better to give the puppies good experiences, rather than having to fix problems down the road.

It's important for all dogs, but especially important for Assistance Dogs...we see people in uniform all of the time when we're out in public, and often times, they're not real happy to see us. I can't tell you how many irate security guards, and managers have come over to try and deny us access. So often times, those people in uniform that we see have really threatening body language. Dogs have a great ability to read people...so it's important for us to have many, many good experiences so we have a solid history of meeting nice uniformed people. That way, we don't get upset and bark or get nervous around them when they're heading towards us.

Score for instance, as a puppy, met firefighters (in boots and suits), police officers, security guards, mail carriers, and anyone else that would hold still long enough for Mom to rush up and shove Score in their face for petting and treats. I think she's planning on doing the same for Bryce. She's crazy like that. (BTW, Score ADORES people in uniform, to this day)

I am fine with people in general...I don't care what you look like or what you say or do, I just stick with John and ignore most everyone else. Mom didn't work with me with this really, it's just how I am. She says it's mostly because of my breed. Aussies are not bred to be everyone's friend...we're reserved by nature. She says it makes for a good Assistance Dog, as I'm friendly but concentrate on the job at hand.


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