Saturday, November 21, 2009

Service Dog for Brain Bludgeoned...

I've mentioned him, but I don't think I've said much about my faithful and fearless companion other than his fondness for chasing bear, cougar, deer, and the occasional squirrel when naught more sporting presents itself. Sardonic grin.

Ardie, named after my favorite whisky, Ardbeg, is a Shetland Shepherd, weighs in at a spry 17 pounds when his fur is wet, and is kind enough to put up with me and my brain bludgeoned training that never ends (we don't do "official" training time, just training in real circumstances as they happen.).

Curious folk occasionally wonder, "what can such a wee lad do as a service dog?" Well, quite alot, actually. First, his job is to catch me if I fall. He can only do this once and fortunately hasn't been around to do it when I have fallen. Second, he makes car rides endurable. There is something about his weight and presence in my lap that helps with cutting through the vertigo, helping me last longer in more challenging circumstances (such as a car ride through winding canyon roads which are the only route to the big city round here). He also is a wonderful help when I am out in public, as people pay attention to him, rather than the odd guy with the big, great looking sticks. This allows me to ignore them and go about my business without getting overloaded with an interaction in a busy public area.

Aside from all those practical things, he is a grand companion who is daft enough to put up with me and my quirkiness and accompany me on all my adventures in the Colorado highlands.

 Plus 6.5 miles
Total Mileage: 209

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