Saturday, December 03, 2011

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Federal law states only canines now qualify as disabled service animals

Federal law states only canines now qualify as disabled service animals


Federal law states only canines now qualify as disabled service animals

Certification obtained by iguana owner has no backing


Sorry... I couldn't resist this photo for this story.

CHRISTINE CULLEN
Staff Writer

(Aug. 6, 2010) Ocean City resident Wayne Short may have his pet iguana certified as a service animal, but a recent change to a federal law means the certification now holds little meaning.

Short caused a stir in the resort this summer by taking Hillary, a 4-foot-long iguana, out on the Boardwalk. In response, the City Council passed a law banning all nondomestic animals from public places.

To get around that, Short obtained certification for the lizard that says she is a service animal trained to help Short with a disability. Federal Americans With Disabilities Act regulations require public establishments to admit service animals, so Short believed he could continue to take Hillary for her daily walks.

Newly hatched Service Iguanas-to-be:)
Young service Iguanas in training- in obedience class.  This is the "long stay":)

But the federal government adopted changes to the ADA law just two weeks ago, with a focus on the definition of a service animal. Under the new law, which will go into effect six months after the July 23 date it was adopted, only dogs can be qualified as service animals for disabled owners.
Prior to July 23, the ADA law defined a service animal “as any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability.” The new law removes the phrase “or other animal” and adds a requirement that the dog must have training to perform tasks that are directly related to the specific disability of its owner.

“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 law now reads.


Don't feed your service iguana in a restaurant.:)

Toni Eames is the president of the International Association of Assistance Dog Partners, an advocacy group that represents people who are partnered with service dogs. She said the group worked closely with the government when it was drafting the changes to the ADA law and the leadership is pleased with the new regulations.

“We worked very hard to get these changes,” she said. “A lot of people out there think just because their pet provides comfort to them, that means they can take them anywhere. It’s been a nightmare. We’re glad the law stresses training now.”

Eames is blind and has a seeing-eye dog that helps her with daily tasks. She said many people flaunted the previous law by falsely claiming their pets are service animals and that made it hard for truly disabled people with properly trained animals to be respected.

A leash-trained Service  Iguana?  Seriously?  What does he help you with??
“The iguana situation is the kind of thing we’re so happy this law is now preventing,” Eames said.

The key to the new law is training. Just because a disabled person has a dog, that does not mean the dog is necessarily a qualified service animal. The dog must be trained to do a specific task and that task must be something that directly helps the owner with his or her disability.

A seeing-eye dog that guides a blind person when walking on the street is a service animal, because the trained task is directly related to the disability. A dog that can bark to alert a blind owner to a ringing telephone is not a service animal, according to the new rules, because the blind person can hear the phone.

“Needing an animal and having it actually trained to help you are two different things,” Eames said.

Another important change is that animals that provide emotional support or comfort to their owners are no longer considered service animals under the law.

All this means that Hillary the iguana, regardless of any training or certification, is not a service animal because only dogs now qualify under the law. She likely never qualified in the first place, according to multiple service dog organizations that expressed outrage over Hillary’s socalled “certification.”

According to both the new and old ADA laws, there is no certification required for service animals. While some states do require certification at that level, Maryland is not one of them and there is no federal listing of service animals.

There are organizations which, for a fee, will send a certificate and identification card stating your pet is a service animal, such as the National Service Animal Registry that certified Hillary. These groups are not affiliated with the government and the certificates they provide do not give the animals any rights under the law.

So regardless of Hillary’s ID card, the law now says she is not a service animal and can legally be banned from public places.

There are creatures other than dogs that can be trained to do specific tasks for disabled people. The nonprofit group Helping Hands: Monkey Helpers for the Disabled has been training Capuchin monkeys to assist quadriplegic citizens for 30 years.



“The monkeys can help get something to eat or drink, help put in a DVD or CD, help a person use the computer, turn the lights on and off, scratch an itch or reposition a leg or arm after a muscle spasm. They’re simple everyday tasks we take for granted,” said, Megan Talbert, executive director of the Boston-based organization.

Talbert said the small monkeys, weighing between 6 and 8 pounds as adults, are perfect to train as assistance animals for people who have been paralyzed because they can do those types of small tasks quite easily. It takes Helping Hands two or three years to fully train each monkey and they offer the helpers to disabled people at no cost.

The changes to the ADA law mean the trained monkeys no longer qualify as service animals because they are not dogs. Talbert said that will have little effect on how Helping Hands operates because the organization only trains its monkeys for in-home use. Talbert said they are not suited to go out in public anyway.

“Our policy is that our monkeys are not supposed to be doing tasks in restaurants or grocery stores or anywhere in public. They do best in environments where there is stability, and they are going to be frightened by a lot of activity or people they don’t know around them,” she said.

She said the new law could affect the organization in a few ways. The volunteers take the monkeys on airplanes when they are ready to be placed with an owner, so their travel could be affected. Also, some states where the monkeys are placed require pet owners to register or get permits for exotic pets, so she said it might be harder to get the monkeys recognized since they no longer fall under the definition of a service animal.
The new ADA law does recognize one species of animal other than dogs: miniature horses. The law makes an exception for specially trained miniature guide horses, saying they must be given the same rights as service dogs if it is possible for the establishment to reasonably accommodate the horse.




Representatives from The Guide Horse Foundation in North Carolina that trains and places miniature guide horses did not return e-mails and phone calls seeking comment.

Service Dogs Only (in most cases)

Montana Fund raising-- A Service Dog for RJ, Child with Autism

Dear friends and family

RJ playing with JJ.
I am writing to you on behalf of my six year old son, RJ, who is in need of a service dog for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). As a military family, we have struggled with many trials and tribulations over the past 6 years. Since I am disabled and have utilized a service dog we have seen many benefits of him having ...a service dog available. However, sending my service dog to school with my son is not an option; therefore, he needs his own.
We have found out many of the tasks an assistance dog can do with children on the Autism Spectrum which also correlates to his other two disorders. Here are some of the things that a service dog will do for RJ:
* Encourage the child to leave a cherished inanimate world
* Act as a companion, offering unconditional love and friendship
* Provide increased safety, preventing the child from bolting into traffic or other dangerous situations
* Offers more freedom to parents by allowing them to shop and not worry about losing sight of the child or the possibility of the child becoming a flight risk
* Can be trained to track a child who has wondered off – offering added safety and peace-of-mind to the family
* Helps improve behavior, by lending support to the child as they cope in highly stressful situations and with routine changes
* Ease the transition to public places like school or the mall
* Help modify the child's behaviour, redirecting the child's focus at school
* Keep a child at their desk
* Helps improve communication
* Helps parents and families educate others about Autism and Autism service dogs and the benefits a service dog has made in their lives
* And the dog can provide independence, allowing the child to walk down the street without holding a parent's hand
* For a child with autism, having a specially trained service dog allows them the benefit of greater social interaction with their peers, increasing the child's self-esteem

Some of the problems we have with my son, RJ, are that he runs away; bolts even. Not only from stores into parking lots and streets, but from schools. RJ doesn't like to leave the house or play outside for very long if at all. He has trouble sitting still for any period of time in school, for meals, in movies, etc. RJ gets over stimulated with loud noises and crowds. He gets easily angered, has meltdowns, and has spatial awareness issues where he has to be touching, bouncing, spinning, etc. Due to his meltdowns RJ will start harming himself, such as biting and scratching, or even taking his clothes off. RJ also has difficulty communicating his wants and needs, as well as social difficulties with understanding his peers and even adults. RJ has trouble falling asleep and even waking up.
The last few nights I have sent my service dog to bed with RJ, so he can go to sleep and we do not need to spend hours fighting to keep him in bed. It has worked well. Yes, this is wonderful news and he is getting more sleep and the mornings are not a fight either. However, I am not able to utilize my service dog while he's with RJ and so this only works when I have another adult at home to assist me.
I am asking you to please help us obtain this service dog for RJ. We have found a wonderful program called On Q Siberians in South Bend, Indiana, which is an intimate program that tailors the dog to fit the needs of the family and has extremely high standards. On Q has a 6-month old pup, named Rocky, ready to begin training for RJ as soon as we pay the deposit of $1,000 and then we can continue to make payments as training continues to reach the $5,500 balance. I have known about the owner, Angel, for many years and have seen dogs she has placed. Another huge and wonderful benefit with On Q is that she will bring the dog out to us and work with us here in our town, home and school. You can check out On Q at www.onqsiberians.org for more information.
The cost of a service dog is quite expensive; however with a little help from everyone the cost can be greatly reduced. We will be able to provide this wonderful little boy with a much needed medical device that can greatly reduce the symptoms and problems he is having not only at home, but also at school that ONLY a Service Dog can do.
Please help us by donating to Randon James Cristner for his service dog. Please help spread the word and share his website www.randonjames.org.

Randon James Cristner
90 W. Madison Ave
Ste E-139
Belgrade, MT 59714-3955


Sincerely,



RC Cristner

Friday, September 02, 2011

Manor of Mixed Blessings- Service Dog Etiquette for Dog Lovers

If you have ever wondered why you can't pet my service dog (or any other) please read the post at the blog link listed below:


http://manorofmixedblessings.com/2011/03/14/service-dog-etiquette-for-dog-lovers/

14 March, 2011


Service Dog Etiquette for Dog Lovers

A friend of mine asked after my rant about adults trying to pet Siddy while he’s in his vest, “Is there ever an appropriate time to pet a working dog in a vest or harness? Like when you’re just hanging around?” And I immediately started kicking myself, because in my rant I didn’t really mention what people SHOULD do if they’d like to pet the dog, just ranted a lot about what they should not do. Bad trainer, me.



Unfortunately there’s no way for me to let people down gently because the only safe answer is “No, there is never an appropriate time to ask to pet a working dog.” There’s a lot of reasons for this, and I’ll detail them below from my own experience using Beowulf (in dog-accessible places since his Public Access Skills aren’t up to snuff for things like restaurants and grocery stores and other REALLY HIGH-DISTRACTION areas) and Sid’s training outing.



1) You can’t tell by looking at someone what that person’s disability may be. Sure, it may look like the dog is just lying down hanging out while its handler waits for the waiter to bring her coffee and spinach quiche, but the dog may be a diabetic or seizure alert dog, or a hearing dog. These dogs need to have their attention focused on their handlers, which they can easily do while lying down next to a chair.



2) While to you it may just look like I’m hanging around, in fact I might have just gotten that hazelnut coffee I’ve wanted all day and settled into this comfy chair at Panera with my coffee and a spinach quiche, and I’m looking forward to some quiet people-watching time. You can’t tell by looking at me whether or not I want to talk to a stranger, or particularly whether I want to talk to the 800th stranger that day who wants to pet my dog. And what looks to you like we’re taking a break and my dog just nudged me so I’d pet him may in fact be my dog alerting me when I fogged out as he was trained to do, and I’m not really in a state to be coherent with a stranger yet.



3) If I let you pet my dog in public, I’ve just taught you and everyone watching that it’s OK to pester service dog handlers about petting their dogs. For all I know, you’re the big dork who is going to ask the next service dog handler you see, and when you’re told “no” you will whip out the “But other people let me do it!” line and then I’m the annoying service dog handler teaching people bad habits.



4) If I let you pet my dog while he’s in harness, I am blurring the line for him between “Working, must concentrate on my person” and “not working, I can be sociable with strangers.” Because I am using my dog to help me stay upright, I can’t take the chance that he may learn that it’s OK to schmooze people while he’s working and veer towards the next clueless person to make a smoochy noise at him. Letting you pet him while he’s working, even if we’re both taking a break, may lead directly to a situation that seriously endangers my safety.



5) I’m probably really, really, really tired at that point of people approaching me and asking about the dog, trying to distract the dog, expecting me to stop what I’m doing and educate them about the dog and about disability, asking me to reveal my medical problems to them because of the dog, or generally treating me like I’m invisible or have the dog with me for a conversation piece or I’m an evil gatekeeper to the dog just out to stop them from having an innocent good time fondling him. I’m just trying to get the things I need to do accomplished, to live my life, and people who will ignore the dog and treat a handler like a dogless human being are few and far between. By asking to pet the dog, you are putting yourself firmly in the camp of “people who don’t treat me like a real human being because of the dog.”



Let me try to tell you what using a service dog part-time has been like for me, using as an analogy something most everybody uses: shoes. You have a pair of shoes. They are the first shoes you have ever found that fit like they were made just for your feet and are really nice-looking shoes. In these shoes, you can go about your whole day and your feet and back and legs feel great and never get tired. In these shoes, you can conquer the whole damn world.



There’s just one problem with the shoes. They attract attention. The first couple of times people smiled at you and said “Nice shoes” it was pretty flattering, but then things started getting a little out of hand. People would stare at your shoes, wherever you went, in a way that made you feel like you were nothing but a way of displaying your wonderful shoes. People would approach you while you’re just trying to buy some milk at the store and get out and go home and expect you to tell them where you got the shoes, how the shoes are working out for you, and then listen to them tell you all about their favorite shoes. Disturbingly, some people will ask to touch your shoes. Sometimes they are still standing when they ask, but other times they are asking as they kneel down and reach out for your shoes. REALLY disturbingly, some people just lunge for your shoes without even asking. Once or twice, you’ve nearly tripped and fallen because someone was grabbing for your shoes. When you act alarmed that these people are trying to take your shoes away while you’re walking in them, people respond by being defensive and angry. Why would you be wearing such wonderful shoes, after all, if you didn’t want to let people touch them or you didn’t want to talk about them? Can’t you see how much they want to touch your fabulous shoes? Why are you being so mean by denying them something they want so much?



When you’re out and about, nobody talks to you about anything but your shoes. You might be in a class you’re really excited to take, because you want to meet other people who are interested in the subject matter, but the other students and the instructor just want to talk to you about your shoes. Even worse, they assume that your shoes are all you know about and act totally surprised when you speak up about things that are not shoe-related. When you ask for help in a shop, the person you’re talking to addresses your shoes rather than you. People say “good morning” to your shoes. People assume that you won’t be able to do things because you won’t want to get your shoes dirty, or you can’t do them because your shoes are not their idea of appropriate footwear for the activity, and they inform you of these exclusions as if you’re supposed to be grateful.



What you’re actually grateful for is the one or two people every day who treat you just like your shoes are nothing remarkable. You come to cherish the people who act as if they don’t even see your shoes. And despite the fact that you love your wonderful shoes, you begin to deeply, deeply wish you could find another pair of shoes that did not attract all this attention that worked for you, but no matter how many pairs you try on, you never can. You find some shoes that are kinda workable and sometimes you wear those just to avoid all the problems with your favorite shoes, even though you know that by the end of the day your feet and legs and back will be aching. After enough painful days, you start feeling pretty bitter towards all the people who make your life so much harder when you’re wearing your favorite shoes, because if they’d just be polite, it would make such a huge difference to you.



So what should you do when you see wonderful shoesa service dog and its handler? The answer is easy: ignore the dog. No matter how much you want to talk about the dog, touch the dog, ask the dog’s handler questions about the dog, tell the dog’s handler about your own dog — don’t. Treat the handler exactly like you are busy treating all the people in the world who do not have dogs with them. If you have a customer service job, or you actually need (not just want) to approach the dog handler, speak to the person, not the dog. Ignore the dog, no matter how hard it is for you. A service dog is not “just” a dog, to its handler it’s a trusted partner and a vital part of what its handler needs to get through the world. Remember too that service dog handlers deserve privacy about their medical issues just as much as everyone else, and asking “Why do you have the dog?” or “what does the dog do for you?” is exactly like asking “So, will you tell me about all your medical problems?” (i.e. none of your business).



The people I am going to happily let pet my service dog are the ones who see me and the dog when the dog is off-duty. In other words, my friends and family, people who might come to my house and hang out, or at whose house I might hang out long enough to ask if I could let my dog be off work, as it were. These are people I know pretty well, obviously. If you’re not one of those people, if you only see me and my dog in public situations, then I’m sorry but no. You can’t pet my dog, and you need to be OK with that.



Comments (64)
Dog Training, Life at the Manor — Tags: disability 101, i like to pontificate, maudlin philosophizing, service dog, sid — Andrea @ 0400

--I couldn't have said it any better than that!

That'll Do

"That'll Do"


by Sally Hull















The ancient hand, trembling, reached out to stroke
his companion of nigh sixteen years.
The grizzled old collie, not a tooth in his head,
gently licked away one of his tears.

"Come up here Laddie." He patted his bed,
with that knotted hand, mapped in blue veins,
that for sixty-eight years had brought life to the land
and wielded the shepherd's cane.

Ever loyal and true, Laddie took his place
beside the shepherd, at his right hand,
ever ready to work, every ready to guard,
ever ready to follow his command.








The old shepherd stroked the soft graying head,
Then embraced his best friend by his side.
He buried his face deeply into his fur,
Breathed in, then gently, he died.

Later that day, the son came to call,
and found them both there in the room.
They both had gone home, together still.
"That'll do Laddie, that'll do."

Copyright Sally Hull 2006

Executive Director
Hull's Haven Border Collie Rescue

And that is the way it should be... both go together if nature would be so kind.












Photos provided from the Border Collie Museum... an online resource that discusses all things Border collie.  EVERYTHING you ever wanted to know and more!  (Really, it is that thorough!)  The link is in the side bar of this blog.

Shutterfly Photobook

The photo book I made to commemorate Rosie's 7th Birthday on 9/3/2011:


Monday, August 08, 2011

'Courtroom dog' helps young rape victim testify



'Courtroom dog' helps young rape victim testify






August 8, 2011



Dog Helps a Witness Testify, and Legal Questions Follow


By WILLIAM GLABERSON

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. — Rosie, the first judicially approved courtroom dog in New York, was in the witness box here nuzzling a 15-year-old girl who was testifying that her father had raped and impregnated her. Rosie sat by the teenager’s feet. At particularly bad moments, she leaned in.

When the trial ended in June with the father’s conviction, the teenager “was most grateful to Rosie above all,” said David A. Crenshaw, a psychologist who works with the teenager.

“She just kept hugging Rosie,” he continued.

Now an appeal planned by the defense lawyers is placing Rosie at the heart of a legal debate that will test whether there will be more Rosies in courtrooms in New York and, possibly, other states.

Rosie is a golden retriever therapy dog who specializes in comforting people when they are under stress. Both prosecutors and defense lawyers have described her as adorable, though she has been known to slobber.

Prosecutors here noted that she is also in the vanguard of a growing trial trend: in Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana and some other states in the last few years, courts have allowed such trained dogs to offer children and other vulnerable witnesses nuzzling solace in front of juries.

The new role for dogs as testimony enablers can, however, raise thorny legal questions. Defense lawyers argue that the dogs may unfairly sway jurors with their cuteness and the natural empathy they attract, whether a witness is telling the truth or not, and some prosecutors insist that the courtroom dogs can be a crucial comfort to those enduring the ordeal of testifying, especially children.

The new witness-stand role for dogs in several states began in 2003, when the prosecution won permission for a dog named Jeeter with a beige button nose to help in a sexual assault case in Seattle. “Sometimes the dog means the difference between a conviction and an acquittal,” said Ellen O’Neill-Stephens, a prosecutor there who has become a campaigner for the dog-in-court cause.

Service dogs have long been permitted in courts. But in a ruling in June that allowed Rosie to accompany the teenage rape victim to the trial here, a Dutchess County Court judge, Stephen L. Greller, said the teenager was traumatized and the defendant, Victor Tohom, appeared threatening.

Although he said there was no precedent in the state, Judge Greller ruled that Rosie was similar to the teddy bear that a New York state appeals court said in 1994 could accompany a child witness.

At least once when the teenager hesitated in Judge Greller’s courtroom, the dog rose and seemed to push the girl gently with her nose. Mr. Tohom was convicted and sentenced to 25 years to life.

His public defenders, David S. Martin and Steven W. Levine, have raised a series of objections that they say seem likely to land the case in New York’s highest court. They argue that as a therapy dog, Rosie responds to people under stress by comforting them, whether the stress comes from confronting a guilty defendant or lying under oath.

But they say jurors are likely to conclude that the dog is helping victims expose the truth. “Every time she stroked the dog,” Mr. Martin said in an interview, “it sent an unconscious message to the jury that she was under stress because she was telling the truth.”

“There was no way for me to cross-examine the dog,” Mr. Martin added.

In written arguments, the defense lawyers claimed it was “prosecutorial misconduct” for the Dutchess County assistant district attorney handling the rape case, Kristine Hawlk, to arrange for Rosie to be taken into the courtroom.

Cute as the dog was, the defense said, Rosie’s presence “infected the trial with such unfairness” that it constituted a violation of their client’s constitutional rights.

Ms. Hawlk declined to discuss Rosie. In written arguments, she said that all Rosie did was help a victim suffering from serious emotional distress, and she called the defense claims “frivolous accusations.”

The defense lawyers acknowledged the risk of appearing antidog. Rosie, they wrote, “is a lovely creature and by all standards a ‘good dog,’ ” and, they added, the defendant “wishes her only the best.”

As the lawyers prepare their appeal, Rosie has been busy. She spent much of her time in recent weeks with two girls, ages 5 and 11, who were getting ready to testify against the man accused of murder in the stabbing of their mother.

The Dutchess prosecutor in that case, Matthew A. Weishaupt, argued that Rosie and dogs like her did not affect the substance of the testimony about horrifying crimes.

“These dogs ease the stress and ease the trauma so a child can take the stand,” Mr. Weishaupt said in an interview.

In the end, Rosie was not needed in the second case: the defendant, Gabriel Lopez-Perez, who had a history of domestic violence, interrupted his trial last week to plead guilty to killing the girls’ mother, his girlfriend, in the Wappingers Falls rooming house where they lived.

But Rosie’s promised appearance next to the children might well have played a role. “It became obvious,” said Mr. Lopez-Perez’s lawyer, Andres Aranda, “that the children were going to be testifying, and he decided to avoid that.”

The defense’s appeal of Rosie’s first courtroom outing, in the rape case, is likely to establish legal principles on the issues of dogs in the witness box. “It is an important case, and appeals courts will consider it an important case,” James A. Cohen, a professor of criminal law at Fordham University School of Law, said.

When New York appeals courts study the question, they are likely to look at the experience of courtroom dogs around the country, including in Washington. In Seattle, a developmentally disabled 57-year-old man, Douglas K. Lare, recently recalled how a Labrador retriever named Ellie, who has made more than 50 court appearances, helped him testify against a man charged with a scheme to steal from him.

Ellie gave him courage when he was afraid, Mr. Lare said in an interview: “It was like I had no other friends in the courthouse except Ellie,” he said.

For 11-year-old Rosie, said her owners, Dale and Lu Picard, the courtroom work is a career change after years working with emotionally troubled children at a residential center in Brewster. The Picards’ organization, Educated Canines Assisting With Disabilities, or ECAD, places service dogs after training them to perform tasks like turning lights on and off and opening doors.

Rosie, named for the civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks, was originally taught to follow 80 commands, including taking off a person’s socks without biting any toes. But she has a special talent with traumatized children, said Dr. Crenshaw, the psychologist who has worked with all three of Rosie’s witnesses and many other troubled children.

“When they start talking about difficult things,” Dr. Crenshaw said, “Rosie picks up on that and goes over and nudges them. I’ve seen it with my own eyes.”


Cesar Milan's USSDR Details:

Service Dog Details For ID#: 1281725901

This Service/Assistance Dog team is properly registered with the United States Service Dog Registry

Handler Name: Cesar millan
Dog Name: Junior
Dog Picture: N/A



What is so wrong with Cesar's Junior Becoming a Certified Service Dog??
http://www.albrittain.com/service-dogs/cesars-way-wrong-about-service-dogs-part-1-overview/

Is Cesar disabled?? What tasks is Junior trained to perform for Cesar?

CM Disabled?

So, to sum it up...  (from Sept 2010) USSDR tells the public that CM is indeed disabled (invisible disability).  However, CM has in no way tried to clarify the mistakes his assistant made in the blog entry that announced Junior becoming "certified" as a service dog with USSDR.  CM can be asked what his service dog does for him and that is not a violation of his rights, yet he has not responded to that either. Instead, whatever articles had been written were pulled.  Whether CM is disabled or not, that is not the issue right now as much as he did not try to responsibly post another entry to correct the misinformation his assistant (or whoever) posted which, at least to me, leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth and still in question as to how honest CM is regarding this whole thing.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Medical assistance dog Luigi is a real lifesaver - Health - News - Dandenong Leader

'Atta boy Luigi! He's making news in his hometown!
Please note that Luigi works in Australia. The SD laws there are different than in the US.

Medical assistance dog Luigi is a real lifesaver - Health - News - Dandenong Leader

Luigi, Medical Alert Dog and Monique

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Complaint Against the Maine Department of Health & Human Services, Bangor, Maine


Complainant: Heather E. Gerquest

Address:       71 Third St. #9
Bangor,         Maine 04401
Phone:          (207)947-2910/478-6996

To: Attn. Scott Cates
     OIAS
     State of Maine- DHHS
     396 Griffin Road
     Bangor, Maine 04401-9975

Date of Incident:       Wednesday- July 6, 2011
Time of Incident:       Approx. 13:30
Location of Incident: Main Entrance to the DHHS offices on Griffin Rd./ 2nd set of doors.

Incident:
Accompanied by my service dog, I was entering the DHHS building to drop off my review paperwork. The line was back to the second (inside) set of doors to the building. A man had a Manchester Terrier or Min Pin dog on a leash. When that dog caught sight of my service dog, the dog began lunging barking and growling at my dog. My dog was only a few feet away from the other dog. I decided I would not wait but would just drop my paperwork off and on my way out was speaking to a person who apparently worked at DHHS. On her way out, she promptly kicked a woman who had a puppy on a leash (who was behaving well I must say) stating to the person with the pup “Don’t worry, you’re not the first puppy I’ve thrown out today.” I mentioned that she should have thrown the other dog out that had lunged and growled at my service dog and she states that the man with the dog said it was a “Therapy” dog, then corrected herself to say “service dog”. I told her that a service dog can be removed from a public setting if it is considered a safety risk to others, and that there was a $1,000 fine for an attack on a service dog by another dog. The woman basically told me that there were a lot of dogs and that is why the dog reacted as such, but having been with large groups of individuals with service dogs on many occasions, if the dog is trained/trained properly, the service dog will not respond in such a manner. The woman said that she has a “service dog” at home (?) that would have done the same thing as the Min Pin. I told her that my dog has sat under a table with up to 10 other service dogs (nose-to-nose with some) with no problems. She says that my dog is well-trained. Service dogs are supposed to be trained. I didn’t mention the fact that none of the other 9 dogs had any problems either (Why? Because they had been properly trained.) The woman said that I could always come back when the guy with the little terrier was gone which totally outraged me. First of all, if this man is indeed disabled, and if this dog is actually trained (or in training) to be a service dog, we are both to be accommodated. However, if his dog was actually behaving like a service dog, accommodating 2 service dog teams separately would not even be a consideration. Considering his dog was misbehaving, why should I have to be the one to leave and come back?? My dog was fine. The man had to hold his dog to keep it from looking and bothering my dog. Even then, he had to work hard at keeping the dog from staring down my dog. When the man put the dog back down, the dog turned around and continued to stare back at my dog. It would be hard for a service dog to do his job if he is busy staring down a service dog behind him/his human. In my group of peers, a dog that behaved like that would be forced to retire early or wash out of training.

In the state of Maine, there is a $1,000 fine for having a dog that attacks a service dog. “A person who owns or keeps a dog that attacks, injures or kills a service animal while the service animal is in discharge of its duties commit’s a civil violation for which a forfeiture of not more than $1,000 may be adjudged. When a person is adjudicated or a violation of this section, the court shall order the person to make restitution to the owner or the service animal for any veterinary bills, and necessary retraining costs or replacement costs of the service animal if it is disabled or killed.” (Title 7; Part 9; Ch 729; ss3961-A)

There is also a $500 fine for misrepresenting a dog as a service dog. “A person who fit’s a dog with a harness, collar, vest or sign of the type commonly used by blind persons in order to represent that the dog is a service dog, or commonly used by a person with disabilities to represent that the dog is a service dog when training of the type that guide dogs normally receive has not been provided or when the dog does not meet the definition of “service Dog” as defined in section 1312 commit’s a civil violation for which a fine of not more than $500 can be adjudged.” (Title 17; Ch 47; sub.2; ss1314-A)

This woman who apparently works at DHHS (Didn't get her name) stated that they had a big meeting regarding service dogs and SD laws recently (?). I would argue that if that is so, that they (DHHS) need more training on the laws and rights of the business (i.e.- DHHS) other customers/clients, and other service dog teams. One meeting doesn’t make a person an expert in the service dog field.

Summary:
I have been active with a few different service dog advocacy groups, listservs, and was an active member of the State of Maine’s “Updating the Definition of Service Dog” work group/advisory group. I have a blog that journals my journey of raising and training my own service dog. The blog has updates on both state and federal laws, articles of access issues and lists of resources that I found helpful in educating a reader about service dogs, or assist someone who wants to raise and train their own service dog. I researched service dogs and therapy dogs etc. for several years before getting my puppy. If I can be of any assistance with education about service dogs, you can call me. I can also suggest other resources as well.

Basically, I am tired of taking my service dog into public places and running into “service dogs” that lunge, bark and growl at my service dog when she is trying to work. This is unacceptable service dog behavior and a disabled person with such dog can be legally asked to remove the dog and return for use of services without. When dogs do this, they are distracting my service dog from her work. Not real great if she needs to alert me.

Maine State Law states: A service dog can be legally excluded…“ When it is shown by defense that the service animal poses a direct threat, or significant risk to the health and safety of others or the use of the service animal would result in substantial physical damage to the property of others or would substantially interfere with the reasonable enjoyment of the public accommodations by others.” (Title 5; Part 12; Ch 337; sub-5; ss 4592-8)

It is after all the individual with the disability that has the right to public access, not the service dog. SD laws were created to prevent discrimination against individuals who utilize service dogs as adaptive devices to assist them in public with their disabling conditions. (Service Dogs are not considered pets under law).

Obviously I would question the validity of the dog being a service dog at all based on it’s behavior. (However the only questions one can ask is 1- Is that your service dog required for a disability? 2- What kind of work/tasks does the dog do for you?) I personally would have kicked that dog out and let the puppy another person had in there stay (could have been a service dog in training which have the same rights to access as full fledged service dogs do). The puppy was sitting and behaving. Instead I am told to leave and come back later? No I think not. I would also question the apparent DHHS worker who claimed her dog at home was a service dog based on what she told me about her dog’s behavior, but mostly because her dog was not with her. Typically a person with a valid disability requires the use of his/her service dog 24/7. One cannot turn on and turn off a disability. However, if it is actually her service dog and not a therapy dog or emotional support dog, it is none of my business what her disability is (which she must be disabled to utilize a service dog). Most people I know often require their service dogs MORE outside the home than in., though that varies. (There are service dogs who are not approved or trained for public access that work only at home. I don‘t know of any.) However I am not here to judge the validity of anyone’s disability. Not my place.

Recommendations:
I recommend that DHHS get more in depth training on service dogs and service dogs in training and the individuals who use them. In general, businesses tend to be afraid of approaching a service dog team and asking that a service dog who is out of control be removed from the premise in fear of a legal battle. However, these businesses do have rights too.

I suggest that not only does DHHS need education on state service dog laws, they should also learn about the federal service dog laws (in the ADA).

The other clients of the business also have rights if a service dog is not behaving appropriately (i.e.- not being a threat to anyone else -or their service dogs, not ruin the experience of other clients, not pose a possible safety risk to others, appear as unobtrusive as possible). The handler of a service dog has rights, but he/she also has responsibilities to the public as well.

Education on the difference between service dogs, emotional support animals and therapy animals (and companion animals which are pets) could be helpful in making sure people know the difference. Many people do not know the difference, and it can be confusing.  The Maine Human Rights Commission's version of Maine State service dog laws only continues to confuse the definitions and blur the different titles.  MHRC has taken the Maine law and translated it to their own liking.  Your best bet is getting a hold of a pamphlet of  service dog laws in Maine as they are written.

I would recommend DHHS calling “The Tail Waggin Training Center” in Levant which is a facility that trains service dogs. They also have a “Handler-training program for those who are disabled but capable of training their own service dogs with assistance. You can reach the Bouliers (Lynn & Rob) who own and run the Tail Waggin Training Center at 884-7017.

If necessary, mediation can be arranged to make sure this matter is deallt with appropriately.



**Enclosed are some Resources I feel might be of help.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

VA Expanding Service Dog Benefits-- The proposed rule clarifies that veterinary-care benefits are authorized and sets up a clear procedure for VA to award those benefits.

Hello my friends,


I come to you today bearing good news. That's a change, isn't it. Are you ready?

Are you a disabled Veteran with a service dog? Are you considering getting a service dog? Than you definitely want to read this article published by Occupational Health and Safety, entitled VA Expanding Service Dog Benefits. The title itself is a bit of a misnomer. The VA isn't exactly "expanding" anything. Not yet. Read on.

This is a PROPOSAL to change to a current regulation already in place. It will add SERVICE DOGS to the current VA regulation which currently covers only Guide Dogs. Yes, some of you out there have had service dogs approved but as you know all too well it's been a real battle. This will (should) take the battle out of it for most of us with service dogs. The proposed regulation will define service dogs. It will spell out exactly what is covered by VA Prosthetics. It is also supposed to spell out the steps for applying -- something which varies from VA Hospital to VA Hospital. Wouldn't it be nice to have a standard?

READ THE FULL TEXT HERE: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-06-16/html/2011-14933.htm I suggest each of you take the time to read this carefully. It describes the proposed changes to the current regulation. Take notes if you have to of things you don't agree with. It will help you to better prepare your comments on this proposal.

HOW CAN YOU HELP? It's easy and it will only take a few minutes of your time. Go to Regulations.gov. There you will see a search key. In the box above it, enter the following, "VA-2011-VHA-0017-0001: AN51-Proposed Rule -Service Dogs" (minus the quotation marks). You have until August 15, 2011 to make comments. State facts. Leave emotions out of it. We all know the VA doesn't care about our emotions or how broke we are. Remember to compare it to a prosthetic device. State why you can't use a standard prosthetic device and why a SD is better for you. The VA will replace and pay to repair our prosthetic devices. Why shouldn't they pay to maintain our dogs? These are working dogs, not pets.

SPREAD THE WORD. Share this blog with every service dog organization you know. Ask them to comment on this proposed regulation. We need to get the word out. Share this with every Veteran you know who has a service dog. The more comments we have the better off we are. We want the VA, particularly Neal Eckrich, to know that we are paying attention. In your comments, tell him what type of service dog you have, not the breed, but what the dog does to assist, as in mobility, seizures, balance, etc.

WHAT THIS IS NOT. This is not for PTSD or mental health dogs. Let's be clear about that. The VA is currently conducting a three year study on the effects of PTSD dogs and their "value" to those of us with PTSD. This is strictly about service dogs that assist us with mobility issues, seizure issues, etc. Read the proposed explanation for further details.

Good luck everyone. Remember, spread this blog far and wide. Encourage everyone you know to comment on this proposed regulation. Let the folks at VA HQ in DC know we are paying attention and we're not going to let this one get by us without our comments. This is too critical for all of us to do nothing.

Until the next time I leave you with these photos of Rocco and me out on the town. I couldn't have done this without Rocco. Thanks to Service Dogs of Florida for helping me train and certify him!


Rocco SD and **Wendi (Who created this article for her blog... wants us to pass it on!)


**Posted by One Weary Soldier at Wednesday, June 22, 2011 0 comments









Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Summer's Beginning: Rosie and Benny spend some more time together; Working and Playing!

Rosie and I wait outside Target for the City Bus.




Rosie and I in the bus heading to town.  In these seats there really
is no foot room so I sometimes have her in my lap. (Paws up, front paws)
Mostly I try to get a better seat though.

Benny finds a good spot under the side seats on the City Bus.



Benny & Rosie at work in a fast food restaurant
Rosie and Benny NOT getting any fast food to eat.






Saturday, April 02, 2011

Delta Society Definitions (Edited by Me): Service Dog, Therapy Dog, Emotional Support Dog

DELTA SOCIETY- (with some editing from me)

The Difference Between:
Service, Therapy, Companion and Emotional Support Animals


This service dog assists her handler by opening a door for her.
Service Dogs (and on occasion, miniature horses) are legally defined (Americans With Disabilities Act- ADA) and are trained to do work or perform tasks to meet the disability-related needs of their disabled individuals/handlers. Federal laws protect the rights of individuals with disabilities to be accompanied by their service dogs in public places to all places the general public is allowed with few exceptions. Service dogs are not considered 'pets'.  They are actually considered 'adaptive equipment'.  Examples of such animals include: Guide dogs for people with visual  impairments, hearing dogs for people with hearing impairments, medical alert dogs for people with diabetes, seizures, PTSD (and other psych disabilities), and also can be trained to assist people with mobility problems.  (They can be trained to pull wheelchairs, provide balance assistance, and brace to assist a person get up after a fall.)


This dog is a therapy dog that helps with a literacy program at a library.
(More information about "Tail Waggin Tutors" http://www.tdi-dog.org/)

Therapy Animals are not legally defined by federal law, but some states have laws defining therapy animals. They provide people with contact to animals, but are not limited to working with people who have disabilities. They are commonly found visiting hospitals, nursing and rehab facilities, retirement homes, and there are some programs where they provide a listening ear to children practicing their reading skills (in library programs). They are typically the personal pets of their handlers, and work with their handlers to provide services to others. Federal laws have no provisions for people to be accompanied by therapy animals in places of public accommodation that have "no pets" policies. Therapy animals frequently only have access to the places they visit only when they are scheduled to work. Therapy animals are not service animals, but service animals can be therapy animals.


This dog works in a therapist's office and provides comfort to the clients if they need it.  (Rest in Peace Daisy.)

A Companion Animal is not legally defined, but is accepted as another term for pet.


This dog is a pet or "companion animal".  He loves his kids, and they love him!

Emotional Support Animals have no legal definition. They are animals who's primary job is that of a pet.  They are allowed in "No Pets" housing to provide comfort to an individual with a disability.  Otherwise they have no public access where as a service dog does.  Emotional Support animals are allowed onto Airplanes as long as the handler has a note from a healthcare provider.  The letter must be shown at the airport.  People may also call these animals Comfort Dogs or Emotional Comfort dogs.

This dog is in training to be a service dog.  she is gently playing fetch with this 2 year old.

Santa Barbara Therapy Dog Survives Fighting Ring, but Blood Sport Remains Active

by Cathy Murillo, Santa Barbara Independent
http://www.independent.com/staff/cathy-murillo/


Alison Hansen with Daisy Mae
 Hell to Heaven

The story of Daisy Mae the pit bull is like that of any other survivor- she suffered pain, got back on her feet, and is now living a sweeter, more meaningful life because of her experience.

Daisy Mae, formerly part of a dogfighting operation is now a therapy dog in Santa Barbara making weekly rounds at Cottage Hospital's Pediatric Ward and Villa Riviera retirement home.  Gentle and affectionate, the three year old cuddles with the elderly and frail, and even allows small children to hold her tight when they are undergoing painful medical procedures.

Her miracle of rehabilitation mirrors that of the dogs rescued from the Michael Vick's fight farm, where only one dog had to be euthanized for being vicious.  Of the remaining 47 Vick canines, most have been placed in homes, many with children, other dogs and cats.

While Daisy Mae and the rehabilitated Vick dogs  are changing hearts and minds about the American Pit Bull Terrier,dogfighting continues to be a dark and bloody reality in the United States.  According to the national Humane Society, 99.9% of fighting dogs are Pit Bulls.  And unlike the Vick case where the football player paid rehab costs, most dogs rescued from fight rings are put down because there are no resources to rescue, evaluate, retrain and relocate the animals.

Sack of Potatoes

Daisy Mae's life these days is a stark contrast to her puppy hood.  Found on the streets of Oakland, California in 2006, she was believed to have served as a "bait" dog in a Pit Bull fighting operation.  Dogs without fighting instincts are used to bring out dominance in other dogs.

The brown and white dog was starved and emaciated at 37 pounds.  Not much else is known about Daisy Mae according to her owner, Alison Hansen, 32, a Santa Barbara wedding planning professional.  Hansen found her in a shelter affiliated with the BAD RAP organization, or Bay Area Dog lovers Responsible About Pit bulls (www.badrap.org/rescue).  The dog was extremely withdrawn and frightened, cowering against the wall.

"Something came over me.  I vowed, 'She can never have a bad day again,''" said Hansen who admits to originally wanting an athletic dog she could exercise with.  "I had wanted a Labrador experience, but what I got was a little sack of potatoes."

Daisy Mae's rehabilitation was intense but amazingly quick.  She hadn't been taken for walks or exposed to the world outside of her pen, apparently.  Whenever facing a new experience- a flight of stairs, the sound of a car horn, bicycles, cats- she would freeze up, lie flat on the ground, or pee herself.

Hansen patiently worked with the dog, who eagerly took to training as she wanted to please her new mistress.  Within 4 months, Daisy Mae had mastered all the basic obedience commands (sit, down, stay), earned a Canine Good Citizen (http://www.akc.org/events/cgc) certificate from the American Kennel Club (AKC), and even passed the rigorous testing developed by Therapy Dogs International (http://www.tdi-dog.org/) to become a working volunteer canine (Therapy dog...  not the same as service dog.  To learn more about the differences, please read the following:  http://www.deltasociety.org/Page.aspx?pid=303#Difference).

Two of the Vick dogs are therapy dogs now too.  One is Hector, who is getting national attention for his accomplishment, as he's covered with ugly scars from fighting.  Hansen believes that Hector and Daisy Mae should stand as proof that bad owners are the problem, not bad dogs.  So moved by her dog's transformation, Hansen has joined the campaign against breed-specific legislation.  "It's not fair for cities, counties or states to outlaw all pit bulls," she said.

"These laws are punishing the wrong end of the leash," Hansen said, adding that many pit bull owners don't know they shouldn't drive through Denver, Colorado with their pet.  The breed, even under the care of a nonresident travelers, is subject to being euthanized.  Closer to home, Hansen has to deal with random breed prejudice.  She tells the story of bringing Daisy Mae to a kickball game.  Although the dog was dressed in a silly Pocahontas dog costume, a frightened woman with a small dog yelled at her, "Keep your f---ing dog away from my dog!"

Joe Yuncker and Daisy Mae

Pit Bull Watch

Humane Society officials are wary of all the publicity generated by the Michael Vick pit bull matter.  Yes, many of the dogs were turned around to live happy, normal lives, but the effort cost a lot of money.  Most Pit Bulls are taken from a fighting situation and end up getting the needle.

"You don't hear so much about the abused and neglected dogs that get euthanized," said Adam Goldfarb, a pit bull expert with the Humane Society of the United States.  "Not all dogs are able to recover from traumatic circumstances."

Dog fighting is a felony in all 50 states, and Goldfarb's organization is active in increasing the penalties for spectators at fighting evens and for ownership of fighting dogs.  The Humane Society offers a $5,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of a dog fighter.  Most busts come from anonymous tips because the industry operates underground.

"Some events are huge and charge admission.  Large amounts of money are being wagered," said Goldfarb.  Additionally, other illicit activities (such as drug use & weapons exchange) are part of the scenario.

Goldfarb is not convinced that a true fighting dog can be rehabilitated.  He described a dangerous combination of a dog that wants to kill, and also exhibits the "gameness" that unscrupulous breeders admire.  Gaminess is a trait by which a dog will continue fighting even though she is injured and exhausted.  "You can't place a dog like that in a community."


Daisy Mae hangs out with Wyatt Talor


No one knows this better than Jan Glick, head of Santa Barbara County's Animal Services department.  Her 3 shelters (www.sbcphd.org/as) are full of pit bulls, and she is quick to point out that shelter dogs are screened for aggression against cats, dogs and an extreme prey drive (going after small wildlife etc.) and for compatibility with small children.

"Pit Bulls were bred to be aggressive against other dogs, not people," she said.  Still the public has a fear of the breed, and it's a stigma that is unwarranted in many cases.  Glick also reports that there have been no dogfighting busts in Santa Barbara County, though she believes some fighting activity does take place.  (There are more incidents of cockfighting; Sheriff's authorities raided an 800 chicken ranch 2 weeks ago.)

Glick was glad to hear about Daisy  Mae's success.  "Every dog is an individual and needs to be evaluated that way," she said.  "I encourage people not to think in a breed specific way."

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Photos... Rowena at Work and Play!

You can't tell that I'm proud of my girl, can you?
And proud of our accomplishments!
Above left- Here we are at the mall right after we passed our PAT (Public Access Test)
Top Right- Rosie and I pose with our Service Dog Team certificate.
Bottom- Rosie with her Service Dog Team certificate.
Working: Rowena with Benny
Rosie and Benny stand by while their humans eat at a Wendy's Restaurant.
Rosie and Benny acting as greeters at Target.  "Welcome to Target!  Is that a service dog?"

Rosie and I visit Benny and his human in the hospital.

Rosie and Benny, meet for the first time and pose for this picture taken in the Bangor Mall.

At Play: Rowena and Benny
Benny is a little larger than she is used to playing with.
Rosie at Work:  Going Places

Rosie and me... Maine State Capitol,  Augusta State House, Augusta, Maine.  Notice the security guy above us.  He came out while we were climbing the steps.  There were no signs saying "stay off the steps" that I saw.

Rosie enjoys the view and rest at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC.
"EQUAL JUSTICE UNDER LAW"
Psychiatric service dogs and their humans pose in front of the court house in Washington DC.  Neil brown-nosed the security guy so we could get a group picture here.  In the lower photo you can see me with Rosie on the far right.

Opening Doors:  Learning New Things







Learning how to help with Laundry.

Young Rosie accompanied me to the ER when I was sick.  Everyone loved her!
Rosie the weary traveler waiting for her flight out of Washington DC after a long visit.  She is actually standing while resting her head on my suitcase.
Do you ever feel like you are being watched while using a restroom in a public place?
I think Rosie was a bit less than a year here when she attended the first folk festival in Bangor, Maine.
Rosie met Winston, a blue shaded sable border collie, at the 3rd Annual PSDS Gathering in Washington DC.  That was the first time there for the both of them.
Sometimes a service dog feels like a superstar that everyone wants their picture taken with.  This girl (we have never seen her before) wanted her picture taken with Rosie as we were getting icecream at an outdoor dining place in Hamden, Maine.

This girl we DO know.  Her family housed Blizzard for a while when he was here.
Autism Awareness walk event in Bangor, Maine.  Rosie waits patiently with one SD in training and one SD on the job.


Rosie Around Town
We often go and play at the fairgrounds.  This is (obviously) the area with all the stables.  She almost looks like a "real" border collie!
I took Rosie out in her Ruff Wear gear one evening to get some photos.

She first poses for me at home
Rosie in Uniform after a long day.  Downtown Bangor.

Sometimes I ask her to pose in weird places.  This would be one of those times.  She so wants to please me, all she needs is a little coaxing and I can usually talk her into it  This was taken at Perry's Nuthouse just outside of Belfast, Maine.

I wanted her right under foot!  Now that's a change!  This oversized L.L. Bean boot is fairly new to the Bean's outlet in Freeport, Maine.
This is Rosie sitting under the giant Paul Bunyan statue in Bangor.  She really is scared of this huge woodsmen. She dealt with it just fine on this day.
Rosie also hates other statues.  It's the fact that they are very human looking and very large and don't smell like a human. No... that's not it.  She saw a cloak hanging on a hat post in a restaurant once and she was terrified of it.  She thought it was human!  I had to bait her and coax her towards it so I could show her it wasn't a person, just a coat.

At Play:  Rosie and Blizzard
Rosie and Blizzard:  Blizzard's first day out to play with Rosie since winter.

Look at Blizzard's big goofy tongue!  Rosie was just tolerating him that day.
This is one of the last times Rosie and Blizzard played.  I had to surrender him to the BC rescue and I really hope they kept their promise and worked with him.  He was very fear aggressive and had poor housepet manners.  He had burnt all his bridges.  We were supposed to be in Oregon, but it didn't happen and I had to surrender him.  Broke my heart to bits.
Blizzard is NOT a water dog.  He didn't understand toys, let alone the whole fetching thing.
Rosie and pack playtime!  Winter in Saxl Park in Bangor, Maine.

Again, Saxl park.  Rosie's best friend Chloe is the Puggle in the back.
Rosie in a sneak attack on Chloe, Rosie's bestest friend ever.

Rosie performs a sneak attack on her buddy, Chloe.

Sofian is the Yellow Lab mix:  "Oops!  Didn't see you all there!"  He somehow TRIPS over the other 3 dogs.  He was pretty old, blind and deaf here.
These two always had a blast
Gnawing on each other playfully
Playing chase and tag
running side by side in matching coats
Chloe wins this game!  She AROOOOs with happiness over her conquered friend.
"I am the dog whisperer"  Okay so treats do help ALOT to gain attention and control.
Action!  
The attack!  Whoa, there you are!
running on the beach
Avoiding a nip
STRETCH puppies!
Playing on the beach
Rosie invites Sofian to a game of tag
Rosie dodges Chloe
Chloe wins!
Last spring, Rosie and I met up with a heeler we know at the city forest. (Diesel?)  When we had seen him last he was a small pup!

Playing With Lobo and Cinco
Lobo was trained by his sister to not be pushy.
Lobo hoping Rosie will surrender the frisbee like his older sister does.  Rosie has no intention of letting go of the frisbee.
Rosie (foreground) playing with Lobo (Left) and Cinco, Lobo's older sister (Right).  They are waiting for the frisbee. Neither of them will interact with the other.  Lol.
I love this photo of a very young Lobo with one of Rosie's frisbees.  It is as big as he is!  He was such a cutey!

Rosie With Some Water
Rosie is not afraid of a little old wave!  Charge forth!

Above:  Rosie charges forth to "Git the Wave!" This is at Reid State Park in Georgetown, Maine.  I photoshopped her leash out.  Dogs are not allowed on the beach but Rosie was on duty.  She has her little mesh vest on.  She's never seen such huge waves before!
Bottom:  Rosie retrieving at her swim hole at the Bangor Waterfront.  It was really hot that day.