Training Your Puppy to be a Diabetic Alert Dog
Training Your Puppy to be a Diabetic Alert Dog. My training manual is in
workbook format with links to online resources, training videos, recommended
products,how to use collect and use scent samples, forms to track
scent training,training checklists, and much more. 122 pages.
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Friday, November 30, 2012
Monday, November 5, 2012
Lily lives in sunny southern California. That's her in the bottom picture ... beach walking with her canine family members, Mckenzie and Travis.
Friday, October 19, 2012
"My roommate was going to take me to Walmart so I could get some soup and cold medicine. We were going with three of her friends as well. The guys wanted to go to Sally Beauty Supply Store to get some stuff so we stopped there before going to Walmart.
"When Kelsey, my roommate was looking at the many different hair extensions and I was standing next to her pointing out that there were even Dancing with the Stars sponsored hair extensions, the manager of the store came over to me and told me that dogs were not allowed into the store. I told her that Ellie was my service dog and pointed out that she had service dog stated clearly in two different spots on her bright pink service dog vest and also on her collar. She then asked me to leave the store. I did not leave the store because I knew that I was allowed to be there with Ellie. This is when the other employee also asked me to leave.
"After that I did leave the store because I was getting mad and did not want to cause a scene in the store and make myself and Ellie look bad. Kelsey told the guys that if they could get the stuff they wanted at Walmart to do that and then explained what had happened. They put back what they could get at Walmart and only got the things that they could not get at Walmart.
"Kelsey then went back into the store to ask for the manager's name and the corporate number that I could call to make a complaint. The manager gave her first name only and said she had no clue what the corporate number was. When we got in the car Kelsey’s boyfriend Ryan looked up the number to call the headquarters for the store. I called the number and got a really nice lady named Gina who was very nice and understanding. After getting my side of the story she put me on hold for ten minutes and called the store to talk to the manager. When she took me off hold she proceeded to tell me that she had explained to the manager that what she had done was against the law and that there were severe consequences that could happen if that ever happened again. Because of this a training program is being set up and the store had to apologize. The person that I talked to was extremely nice and I was happy with how the situation was handled. They are sending me a gift card and a coupon to use if I choose to do so.
"I am happy with how things were handled and now everything is all better.
As the trainer who oversaw Ellie's DAD training, I could not be more proud of these two. Caitlin has consistently exhibited incredibly mature behavior in training and caring for her service dog and knowing their rights. She is a rock star in my world!"The group of people that I was around during this were supportive and stuck up for me when I was unable to do so for my self. Things at college are so much better than they were in high school and I would not change anything if I was given the chance."
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Sunday, July 15, 2012
A year ago, I drove a puppy named Jasper to his new home and his new family. He was 10 weeks old. Unbeknownst to him, he was about to embark on an incredible journey.
Home is a happy place for Jasper. He lives out in the country, gets to romp and play, and has a family who loves him. He also has a job. He is a diabetic alert dog. Roxanne and her husband, Matt, wanted a diabetic alert dog for their son, 6-year-old Dylan, a Type 1 Diabetic.
Jasper soon learned there was more than one T1 Diabetic in his new home. Although his primary job is to alert on Dylan's fluctuating blood sugar levels, he also alerts on Roxanne's. For Jasper, a low is a low, a high is a high - no matter who is having it.
This family is having great success with their diabetic alert dog. They opted to start with a puppy and train him themselves with the oversight of their trainer. Day in, day out they worked to teach Jasper his obedience skills, good manners (he was a typical happy, waggy, "I want to jump on you and play with you" puppy), while helping him learn to recognize low and high blood sugar levels in his diabetics.
There have been stops and starts this last year. Regrouping. Plan B, C and D. The family kept working. Jasper kept learning and maturing. At 14 months, Jasper is on the job. He consistently alerts during the day to both Roxanne and Dylan's falling and rising blood sugar levels. Like many of his peers, night alerts are just now beginning. Like his day alerts, they will become consistent. It's just a matter of time.
While waiting for those night alerts to become consistent, the training doesn't stop. Picture this: Roxanne is going high and Dylan is going low - at the same time. The family is teaching Jasper specific alerts so they will know who is going what direction. Imagine. A dog who can, with distinctive alerts, tell Dylan he is going low and then tell Roxanne she is going high. And vice versa. Jasper is learning it all while being a great family dog, loving life, working hard.
Monday, June 18, 2012
I have been told by my own clients that the forum is especially helpful. The world of diabetic alert service dogs is confusing ... full of more questions than answers, fraught with good and bad trainers and organizations, and jam packed with conflicting information. Rachel's site can help you navigate all of this by providing good information based on real-life experience.
Friday, May 11, 2012
“Service animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the handler´s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors. The crime deterrent effects of an animal´s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.”Important changes include:
- Only dogs are recognized as service animals.
Service animals are exempt from breed bans as well as size and weight limitations.
Need more information? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sunday, April 29, 2012
I stress the importance of great handling skills in public to my service dog families. Why? Because a dog who is distracted, anxious or improperly trained cannot effectively do his job. The video that follows illustrates appropriate handling skills by 13-year-old Olivia. She worked her year-old Diabetic Alert Dog, Gracie, deftly through and around people. For more than two hours, Gracie was focused, tail wagging - a perfect canine partner.
Bravo to Olivia and all the other great kids I work with. They demonstrate time after time that young people are often the best dog handlers.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Recently, this lovely black Lab helped me demonstrate how to attach the world "heel" to a specific behavior. Notice that I work her near a wall or a piece of furniture. Why? I want her to walk in a straight line next to me and sit next to me without swinging her butt out. Also, each time we stop, our toes should be aligned.
Practicing lots of off-leash heeling indoors will soon have you walking your dog through your neighborhood, on-leash, at heel - making you very proud and your neighbors very jealous!
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Invisible? Not literally, of course. But, yes, invisible in that the public is unaware of your dog's presence unless they walk past you. No matter where you go with your service dog, he should be well mannered, focused on and in sync with you. People who observe you leaving a restaurant should be overheard saying "I didn't even know there was a dog in here." In this video, 17-year-old Annie grocery shops with her 10-month-old Diabetic Alert Dog, Pacey. Note where he is sitting and his demeanor. He is quietly waiting (and watching) his handler.
Young handler. Young dog. Great job!