Monday, November 3, 2014

Dress rehearsal

June 20, 2014

Tammy's agenda for our training session includes the monthly topics we need to cover: STAY and TRAFFIC. Needless to say, we won't be doing much work with traffic on the inside. But we can work on STAY.

A small golden retriever puppy is snuggled in a grey prison blanket on a tile floor. The puppy's head is on the floor on its right side and the blanket covers the rest of his body. A brown leash is attached to his collar and is draped over the blanket. A man's lower leg (in the prison blue pants) with a black shoe is visible next to the puppy on the right of the photo.
No problem here with STAY. FLD Andie has it down!

The guys are eager to show us what they've planned for next month's "Puppy Days" celebration. 

Two men are holding up a large, long vinyl sign. The man on the left is wearing jeans and a blue short-sleeved shirt. The man on the right is wearing the blue prison unform. There are men sitting down around the room in the background. The room has a tile floor and white ceiling tiles with lights and a fan. The banner is white with black paw prints along both sides. It has "Leader Dogs for the Blind" in blue letters on the top and large black letters below say "PUPPY DAYS" with a green outline of the Upper Peninsula behind them. Below that in smaller blue letters is "Chippewa Corectional Facility"
ARUS Rob (left) and Matt (right) hold up the banner for July's "Puppy Days" celebration.

Tammy had charged the teams with figuring out a routine with the puppies to show off their skills. The men re-imagined the relaxation protocol, adding distractions such as dribbling basketballs, running and clapping, stepping over the puppies while in a down position, recalls and more. They ask Tammy to read each step as they perform the almost-military-drill for us.

We are impressed.

An outside shot of the prison puppy raisers demonstrating their performance. Two golden retrievers on the left and one chocolate lab on the right are lying down on the grass; two men are visible standing next to the goldens on the left, the nearest one is wearing the blue prison uniform, but his head is out of the frame. The furthest man is wearing the prison blue pants and a green sweatshrit. A man wearing a white t-shirt and prison blue pants is bouncing a basketball past the puppies. Another man dressed in the prison blue uniform is also bouncing a basketball. In the background is the brick wall of the prison with a couple windows. A man wearing a maroon sweatshirt is in the background.
FLD Drummond (foreground), FLD August (behind), and FLD Bandit (right) hold a down position with bouncing ball distractions.
The two goldens are still lying down, the one in the foreground is looking up at the man standing next to him. The man is looking down at the puppy.
FLD Drummond looks up at his handler...

The two goldens are still lying down. The one in the foreground is yawning. In the background is a woman wearing blue jeans and a grey t-shirt; she is holding a piece of paper and smiling. A man wearing green prison pants and a white shirt is running toward the right clapping his hands.
...he seems bored with all the commotion.
The goldens and chocolate lab are still lying down while two men dressed in the prison blue uniforms step over them. There are several men and the woman standing in the background watching.
The puppies hold still even while the men step over them.
There are several men and the woman standing in the background watching as two black labs run past each other from opposite directions. A goldne retriever is standing up on the right side like he is trying to reach the running puppies, but a man dressed in the blue prison uniforms is holding his collar. A yellow lab in the background is lying on the ground.
Whoops! The racing labs during the recall pull FLD Granite out of his "down."

We are so proud of the teams and all their hard work.

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