"Yes." I looked at him and didn't recognize him.
"Do you write the blog?"
"I read the blog all the time!"
"Hi! Nice to meet you." Oh man, this was surreal. HRH had fans! Fans who recognized her.
Turns out that Michael and his wife Meredith are first time puppy raisers from Houston, Texas and are super nice (see below, HRH had to have them pose with her, they are after all HER fans).
Michael said that he had read about HRH and even about Bingo and that it had helped them with Sunshine, their 6 month old yellow lab, seen below with HRH. I was thinking it probably helped them more with what not to do, than anything else, but we got to talking about being a first time raiser and the fear that you have that what you are doing is going to permanently damage your puppy.
I remember that fear (it never really goes away (or maybe that is just my craziness)), constantly thinking that I was doing something wrong that would scar Bingo in some way or that I hadn't started him on the right command at the right time. It wasn't until our obedience classes with Jennifer when she told us, if you follow the program and do your best, we will be able to work with what your dog knows. Ultimately it is up to the dog to decide if he wants to be a guide dog or not.
That being said, it is important not to let the dog develop bad habits such as jumping on furniture, eating people food or begging, jumping up, etc. But if you follow the manual with good intentions, it will all work out.
And if the manual doesn't cover what to do when your dog barks during the middle of the first movement of the symphony, that's why we're here! In fact, we specialize in that.
HRH and Sunshine. Notice that Sunshine is already much larger than our delicate flower. Sigh. She's a pygmy lab.