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Public Access training and annoying people....

The Service and Therapy Dog forum is for all service and therapy dogs regardless of whether or not their status is legally defined by federal or state law, how they are trained, or whether or not they are "certified." Posts questioning or disputing a person's need for a service or therapy dog, the validity of a person's service or therapy dog, or the dog's ability to do the work of a service or therapy dog are not permitted in this forum. Please keep discussions fun, friendly, and helpful at all times.

  
Argo

Love my mommy!
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 2:22pm PST 
i was given promission to take Argo into Walmart to train her in her Public Access...while there there was a lady that would not leave us alone...we were working with a cart and Argo was doing wonderful...i would stop every now and then to "decide" on something on a self...she would sit and then some of times she would lie down to wait for me to pick what i was going to get on the self...this was when the dumb lady came by...

she said "oooooooooooohhhh....how cute...i just love dogs....can i pet her?"

i said, "im sorry, no, she is training right now...perhaps later when we are outside of the store and not in training mode, i will allow it...but no you can not pet her right now" i do allow people to pet her as long as she is sitting down and remains sitted, if she gets up for any reason, then she is not allowed to be petted until i put her back into sit and she stays...i am working on her CGC since i dont not have the time to enroll her during the summmer classes...we are hoping for this Aug....but i want her petting controlled and not while we are training in a store...

she says, "oh i totally understand, i know service dogs arent suppose to be petted...but ooooh she is so cute and im such a dog person..." this is when she started coming at Argo and me and was bending down to try and pet Argo....i put Argo behind me and again told her that she was training and to not pet her...the lady continued to not hear me....i kept backing away from her and grabed the cart and started off down another aisle...Argo just went were i went and such...the lady followed and again tried to pet her...i was getting very very annoyed at this time and my words were very harsh from her not understanding (im irish comanche...pissing me off is not always in ones best intrest, lol)....Argo went behind me and sit...staring at the lady but was not aggressive in any way...just sat and stared at the crazy lady not listening...

the lady said, "oh look she is afraid of me...oh she shouldnt be...come here cutty i will not hurt you..." at this point i told the woman off...and said that she was not afraid of her but was listening to my commands to not be petted and to follow my commands....she was in training mode and was doing her job...i told the lady that i needed to go about my life and do what i needed to do to live my life...which was not running around trying to avoid her ***....basically after cursing her out and getting all frustered she left me alone and we went back to our training....but it was annoying...she kept following us everywhere until i told her off...

another time...we were eatting at a resturant (TC's were they have outside tables) and this man kept asking me and my friend a bunch of questions, but he was an idiot...i mean really...i get annoyed sometimes when people dont understand something you spell out for them...but this guy...it went in one ear and out the other...he was a very general person who wasnt very educated and didnt seem to want to learn things either...he thought only the Blind had service dogs and after trying to explain that there are many different people that have service dogs for all sorts of life disabilities he just didnt seem to get it...and when i explained that there were peanut dogs and seasure (sp) dogs....mobility dogs...i named off a bunch of different types...that is when he asked me why i was training her and what she was for....when i said i was training her for my rare sleep disorder...and that i slept on avg. 12 to 14 hrs but have been known to do 36hrs before...he said, oh so you have insomina...i told him no...im hypersomic...meaning i sleep alot...i do not have trouble sleeping and i have trouble having a normal life because i sleep so much that i cant hold down a job or finish school without her...she wakes me to take my meds and to keep me up during the day so that i do not fall asleep...i can have a normal sleep/awake cycle...

he still was not understanding and said, "oh, well i have trouble sleeping every now and then and cant fall asleep...does that mean i can have a service dog?"

at this point i wanted to scream...i said no that only a doctor could proscribe and that a dog can not help you go to sleep...only remind you to take meds to sleep...but that does not inhibit ones life...i on the other hand could not hold down a job...lost tons of jobs for sleeping though work (not but an hour or two but the whole shift...) and sleeping though college classes...i was the top of my high school class and am in the top 1% for IQ but because of my sleep disorder along with my LD's...i am not even finished with college at 31yrs old...im broke and have been homeless several times, because i slept though things that i should have been able to get to if i had a normal body...this still did not get though to him...

at this point, my friend and i were so annoyed...we finally just told the guy that we really did not have enough time to explain and that we really just wanted to enjoy each others company and our dinner which was now cold...i also told him that i sometimes hate that now i cant just go into a resturant or place gas station, even a mall without becoming the center of attention and getting asked a billion questions...now mind you...we are still training so i have to get promission from the places im going to and have to really pay attention to were these places are at, ect....but the point is...for the rest of my life, at least i will be awake to enjoy it, but i will always never be incognito again....all i want is to come into a resturant or store of any kind and go about my business....when talking to someone and telling them that you would love to fill them in but you do not have the time...these people should just leave you be and either find out for themselves or ask you another time...its just so annoying...

how many of you go though this stuff all the time? i know ive seen many posts so far...i was just wondering, what others use to get these people to understand or to get off your back when your annoyed beyond your ok points? i mean, this even happens in pet stores...anyways...what do you do?
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Harley, SD,- CGC, TDI

Super Service- Boy!
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 2:40pm PST 
This is all part of it. EVERY time we go ANYWHERE we are the center of attention. I've said that now we know what its like to be related with a celebrity. I can not name a single time we have gone anywhere and no received some sort of inquiry about Harley. Sometimes, its very friendly and well meaning (though not any less annoying at times), sometimes its intrusive with all the "what's wrong with you" questions, sometimes its confrontational, sometimes its down right wrong (like last night).

I ignore what I can. I engage and educate when I can. I have had to grow a backbone and stand up for both myself and my dog when I need to. Always remember, that you may very well be the only service dog teams that some people have ever seen (or will ever see). Many of them don't know that there are service dogs other than guide dogs. They are understandably curious.

On Wal Mart....was it a Super Walmart? Please remember, that if the store has food, they can't give permission for a SDIT if the state doesn't grant access. They may not know that as many don't know SD laws at all. But, your presence could cause them to be fined by the health department. Its not the way it should be, but it is the way it is.
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Dixie

A true southern- belle
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 3:16pm PST 
This is why we are constantly telling people to think about their decision to enter the service dog lifestyle. This is a big part of it and you have to be prepared to educate and talk to people any time you are out in public. Every team represents the entire community, so we always have to be polite or firm if necessary, but try not to be rude. Service dogs are a novelty, so you will always be the center of attention. I made a brochure to give out to people which helps, but doesn't replace talking.
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Argo

Love my mommy!
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 5:16pm PST 
true...ive gotten used to it in a lot of ways...but when its 20mins later and your food is now cold by stupidity....its just annoying...i mean...if im there to eat or train...then im there to do that...its something called respect...we were working on not taking food on the floor at the resturant we were at, since there is an outside food spot... smile and by the time i finally got to my food it was cold...and i was pissy....but i think he was an idoit....the things he said...i guess i just cant take stupid people...if i inform and you still arent getting it...then look it up and leave me be...im not here to guide you though your life...**sighs**
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Sabrina

American Bully- Love
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 5:35pm PST 
this is the sad truth alot of people don't get things unless you are yelling or cussing at themlaugh out loud.i think it's funny because if they dont listen to your rules how did they pass school.the guy that kept asking dumb questions proably was a drop out or trying to act stupid and get to you.i want bria to be cgc but i don't know where classes are.i'm sorry to hear about the college thing but just know you arent the only one!one lady said that she wanted to finish college before she died and she was in her late 70's or early 80's she got her dying wish but she died the night after she graduated.bless her heart!sorry i got off topic but i though i'd share that just incase you were embarassed about college.
i wish you two luck and i hope you wont have anymore annoying people getting in your way!i'm wishing you luck on college also!
xoxo sabrina
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Iris vom- Zauberberg

Service Werewolf
 
 
Barked: Sun Jul 18, '10 7:57pm PST 
This is one of the reasons I've been printing off brochures to give people with questions. Before I made up a brochure specific to Iris, I was using the generic one from Delta Society.

www.deltasociety.org/Document.doc?id=239

When people have a lot of questions and I don't have a lot of time, I hand them a brochure and tell them how much I appreciate their interest in supporting service dog teams.

One thing you might say in the future in a restaurant is that even though your SDiT is your favorite topic, you need to get to your dinner before it gets cold.

Hand them a brochure, smile and then focus on your companion and your meal.

It has taken me months to get into a routine for handling questions. I want the people who approach me to have a positive view of the interaction.

It can be hard to draw the line when there is a persistent person. Brochures can be gold in these situations, because it makes the person focus on the paper in his or her hand and you can go on with your shopping or whatever.

I have rarely left a store or restaurant without handing out a brochure.

One thing to keep in mind is that the people you meet are those who might back you or other service dog teams up when there is a public access challenge.

Give yourself some time to learn how you can best manage to balance the questions vs. your time.
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