October 3- October 6, 2008, My friend and I set out via plane with our service dogs to attend the 4th Annual PSDS gathering in Arlington, Virginia. It was much more fun traveling with another person and service dog and turned what would have been a lot more nerve wracking actually kind of fun!
We arrived in Arlington at about 3 pm on Friday the 3rd and spent a little relaxation time in our hotel room before hiking out for Joan's apartment for the evening gathering of people and their service dogs. She does this every year and we manage to cram quite a number of bodies into that little apartment. She always has good food and drink waiting. To my surprise, my friend Elaine and her Sheltie SD and me and my Rosie were the first to arrive. We helped put some things together for the main even, the Saturday gathering at the dog park. Eventually people began to show up. There were many dogs, some not on their best behavior (or maybe they were), and of all sizes. I recognized each dog as they came through the door and thus was able to identify the human following behind as a result. We watched a couple of videos, but it was hard for me to get comfortable as Rosie needed protection from me and I needed to relocate to view one of the videos. This put me peering into the bedroom from the door with Rosie underneath me as I tried to view the video on the bedroom TV screen.
Rosie finds a safe place to chill out at Joan's busy apartment
My friend Elaine and I took a slow morning and ate breakfast with some new friends before heading out early to the dog park to help set up for the main event... the Silent Auction and luncheon.
Rosie waits for me to finish breakfast at the hotel restaurant. Love the carpet
AT THE DOG PARK, SETTING UP FOR THE GATHERING...
Two Standard Poodles participate with their human in the "Doga" class
Service Dogs in Training: Chocolate Lab, Fallon and German Shepherd Dog, Sophie get dressed for the hike back to their hotels with their humans... Elaine with Destry, a Belgian Shepherd from Texas.
I will be posting on the rest of Saturday... the hike home and evening visitors. STAY TUNED!
Fallon on the left with his human, Winston and his human, and Teddy with his human walk down the sidewalk in Arlington. We are going to meet with other SDs and handlers for a Sunday lunch.