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    service dogs/ companion dogs

    I have a few questions. I have a companion/ service dog she's almost 2. Any way i spoiler her. Table scaps, dog cookies, toys, ect. My question is is it wrong for me to let her sleep with me and cuddle her, love on her and play with her? As i got her as a puppy and have been doing this all her life. The reason i am asking is because one trainer literally yelled at me about all the love i give her. Now mind you i bought and paid for her and her training. And i don't feel all the love i give her is killing her. The main reason we got her is beause i have ptsd. And she's always with me when no ones around. Very protective of me.

    Sorry if this is in the wrong section. I figured since she was a service animal that she would be concidered equipment. Thanks ry

    #2
    as long as you still use the commands regularly she was taught then why not. love & companionship is great, table scraps and cheap dog cookies are not!!!!! my 12 year old border collie only gets broccoli, carrots or green beans from the table. Holistic dog food and "Blue Buffalo" or similar treats only. 12 years old and she acts and looks half her age.

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      #3
      Is it causing a problem for YOU? I mean, does she not obey you, or do the tasks she has been trained for. I would say that if she "works" ok, don;t worry about it. The dog/owner bond is a big thing. Health wise, watch the table scraps tho, no junk I mean. I always let my dog have meat scraps and veggies and such.
      T7-8 since Feb 2005

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        #4
        She obeys me no one else thou. Well my fiance she does only certian comands thou. Tv table scaps she gets are meat, veggies, some fruit. My vet told me all this was ok and healthy. Also she get an ocassional popscile. Baths once a week. Once a month she gets oat meal and eggs for breakfast. She sleeps with me. Loves to go out and meet new people. Everyone says shes a great dog. Her vet loves her to pieces. Mind you she is only a 2 year old lab puppy. Most labs aren't fully tarned untill the are around 3 or 4 as i see it she's ahead of the game. I let her be a dog when i can. Witch is alot of the time. She comes when she's called and helps when she's asked. I didn't want a drone for my service/companion animal. I think she's a good match. And does whats asked of her. I donno what this trainers problem is. I think i should get a new one.

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          #5
          Our home was a a foster home for rescue Dobermans. Nearly 40 dogs passed through our home over the years of our service to the league. We had to break bad habits before the dogs could be adopted. You cannot spoil your dog with love, but you can ruin her, and even kill her, as you say, by doing what you are doing. I side with the trainer.

          First, lay off the table food. It is very bad for a dog's teeth and overall health. The veggies BobMach mentions are good snacks. Our dogs also enjoyed cantalope and apples.

          Second, sleeping in bed with you is a very bad idea. Dogs on furniture get very territorial over what they consider their space. We fostered one Dobe that was allowed on furniture and was turned in for her agressive behavior over her space. We worked hard to get her over that. I warned the person who adopted her to keep her off the furniture, or there would be trouble. Sure enough, a few weeks later I get a call that she took a nip at him when he attempted to remove her from the bed he had been sharing with her, until his girlfriend came for a visit. What a jerk!!! He had been warned.

          I worry that you say she is "very protective" of you. A service dog, or even a pet, should look out for your well being, but "very protective" is not a good thing. It makes welcome guests in your home uncomfortable, and a service dog, especially, should have impeccable manners in the home and on the street.

          What service is she trained for?

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            #6
            She's mainly trained for my aspergers and ptsd. Protective meaning she gets inbetween and grumbles at people to get them to step back. That what she was trained to do. Thats her job. She goes every 3 months to the vet for checm ups. And my very said she's healthy. I asked him over and over about th e table foods i was feeding her. And he said they were fine. I eat and she gets the meat fats or the vegies thats lset over. She also encourages me to eat. Witch has help put some weight on me. Sounds sad but i need the encouragement as i have celiac disease. And alergic to foods. She has only nipped at a kid one time. But thats because he jumped off the couch while she was sleeping on to her ribs. Broke 3 of her ribs. Not to be mean but i'd bite too. All my nieghbors know her and love her . I will reconcider your point.

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              #7
              Originally posted by randomryan007 View Post
              She obeys me no one else thou. Well my fiance she does only certian comands thou. Tv table scaps she gets are meat, veggies, some fruit. My vet told me all this was ok and healthy. Also she get an ocassional popscile. Baths once a week. Once a month she gets oat meal and eggs for breakfast. She sleeps with me. Loves to go out and meet new people. Everyone says shes a great dog. Her vet loves her to pieces. Mind you she is only a 2 year old lab puppy. Most labs aren't fully tarned untill the are around 3 or 4 as i see it she's ahead of the game. I let her be a dog when i can. Witch is alot of the time. She comes when she's called and helps when she's asked. I didn't want a drone for my service/companion animal. I think she's a good match. And does whats asked of her. I donno what this trainers problem is. I think i should get a new one.
              2 is no longer a puppy and most SD are fully trained by then. They will learn new commands for your particular living situation as you become more of a team.

              Why do you need a trainer if you're training her?

              Training is HARD work and can be frustrating for both human and canine.

              I've never heard any trainer not say have your SD not in your bed. You put the dog where it is best/safe for both of you.

              and working dogs are not Drones, they're working.
              Get involved in politics as if your life depended on it, because it does. -- Justin Dart

              I shall not tolerate ignorance or hate speech on this site.

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                #8
                The trainer is for obedience and for her to take cues from me when i am having attacks from to much simulation. We were not sure of have to train her how to take cues. She's been trained to snaps of your fingers and claps as her cues. This was the first dog we had trained. I had an staffordshire that was a complete natrual when it can to me and my disabilitys. This lab is smart. But she was stubborn.

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                  #9
                  Rule of thumb. Think like a dog. Be the pack leader.
                  You should be confident in your trainer.
                  Get involved in politics as if your life depended on it, because it does. -- Justin Dart

                  I shall not tolerate ignorance or hate speech on this site.

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                    #10
                    What, exactly, did the trainer yell about? You stated it was about all the love you gave your dog, but I am guessing that it was not about too much love. Come on -- fess up. What caused the trainer, the professional, to yell at you?

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                      #11
                      Randomyran, nothing you're doing sounds bad at all. As long as she's well-behaved and healthy, that's all you can ask. I'm an SD user as well (mobilitly and overstimulation and some anxiety thrown in...I have Asperger's, a lot of sensory overstimulation to sound, and severe Tourette's which often makes it hard to walk.) My buddy, Mack, sleeps with me too, gets tons of love from my parents and me and my brother. He gets a few table scraps, not much though. I got him from an organization, so I've had a lot of guidance for my questions, which sound a lot like yours.

                      Ditto on the training....gosh it's a lot of work! People who don't have service dogs don't know about service dogs, or the kind of training it takes...or what works with a service dog...or with your particular dog for that matter! It's funny, so many folks seem to think (as evidenced on here too....) they're robots or something and/ need this military type discipline...no time off, always on rigorous discipline...uh, not happening! Service dog, they will be a dog first, second a service dog. They need love, as I'm sure you know...being harsh isn't good for any dog, especially one that has to be very closely bonded to its handler and extremely good natured. My Mack seems to think it's all some sort of wonderful game that we play, everything is so fun and he does it all for me...something like that. He must think the world of me...and that's nice yknow, cuz not everybody feels the same way about me! (But it's reciprocated...he's my entire universe!)

                      I'm running a service dog support group/page on facebook called 'All sorts of service dogs (not necessarily blind).' Feel free to join if you want! PS: friend me, we'll be the service dog duo.

                      PS: I have had PTSD myself. I know how bad it sucks. I hope your girl helps you with it! I don't think my physical issues have been as hard-hitting and caused nearly as much distress for me as have the emotional and neuo-psych and sensory symptoms I have. Mack's done awesome things for me just *being there*....and the mobiltiy stuff has opened my world wide open...I feel like I can do almost anything...like I was pre disability almost.
                      Last edited by voxina; 21 Aug 2012, 2:28 PM. Reason: Sorry, didn't realize the first reply I made went through! My iintenret was messing up and said it didn't post.
                      Tourette's Syndrome - motor tics of the legs, feet and back, which can make it difficult or impossible to walk

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                        #12
                        Trainer said that my lab is very spoiled and needs more disaplin. She went to hit my lab to make her sit down and i blew. Thats when the trainer went off about any and everything she could. Kind of nit picking. I don't hit her!!!! Nope! This is a new trainer. I told her hit my dog and find out what happens. The worst thing my dog has had is her nuzzle grabed i growl she lays down or sits. Never hit. I don't want her hit.. end of story. She's a good girl. I just think i need to find a new trainer. Very simple. This trainer has only had 2 sessions with my dog. And treats my dog like she's at the bottom of the pack. Wrong. Wrong. I am the alpha dog. My dog has 3 other dogs she's around all the time. Also goes in public. And to the dog park. I have never hd issues with anyone or dog with her. So i am not sure what the full problem is

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                          #13
                          Problem = the trainer. tell her to fuck off

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                            #14
                            Ok the one issue with the kid jumping on her. But she didn't hurt him. Scared him and he pee'd his pants but thats it. By the way she has tons of kids around her. I am the only one that feeds her scaps so its a nightly thing we share. A couple pieces of meat, a tiny bit of veggies. And salad letuce. Witch she enjoys. She's my best friend. And for me that means everything. She's there when nobody else is. Her best buddy dogs are a pug and a bloodhound. And my daughters boxer. Now the boxer needs dosaplin and training. Lmao.

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by randomryan007 View Post
                              ...My question is is it wrong for me to let her sleep with me and cuddle her, love on her and play with her? As i got her as a puppy and have been doing this all her life. The reason i am asking is because one trainer literally yelled at me about all the love i give her. Now mind you i bought and paid for her and her training. And i don't feel all the love i give her is killing her. T.

                              Sorry if this is in the wrong section. I figured since she was a service animal that she would be concidered equipment. Thanks ry

                              Spoiling provided her behavior and health are not affected by it is OK. I'm a service dog user too. The folks that replied some of em seem to just have different dog-care philosophies than you do...which is OK of course. If they wanna go for gourmet dog food, cool. If very strict training is what their dogs need...OK too.

                              About the food: if the vet OKs it then it's fine!

                              About the love: the more the better! (As long as she doesn't act bratty for it)

                              About the sleeping with you: it's fine! Sometimes Mack has to sit with me out places...for a good reason though...I need deep pressure of him lying on my body to lessen my movements, or else I can spazz so much I can't even sit up. (usually he just props iin my lap...sometimes If I'm lying on a bench I'll get him up in the seat with me.) Having him lie in my bed is sort of a natural extension of the physical touch part of his job. And even if that's not part of your SD's job, touch, it's perfectly fine for her to sleep with you. If she starts getting posessive of the bed, discipline (time-outs, stiff "No" or making her stop sleeping with you) will curb it. I haven't had much of any problems with him over the furniture (at home I permit it, out places it's not OK, and he gets it.) Recently at the dentist's I had to get him on top of me while they were doing my teeth...I was having an attack and would have fallen off the table or have bitten off a few fingers....:P

                              About the play: a MUST. A dog cannot behave if they don't have their needs met first...which includes exercise! (and love/affection.)

                              I got my dog from an organization, a year ago. I know what you mean about work...OMG, wow. First few months, I trained my @$$ off. The organization I work with does these training tests...we 'graduated' the program just this July, almost a year since I got him. OMG, tomorrows our anniverery...(the program did a team-graduation after training. It was the happiest day of my life, ever!) I know the feeling of having questions...I have questions often myself. I shoot emails and phone messages to the organization trainer like nobody's bussienss. :P She always has a training tip or whatever for a situation.

                              I have Asperger's too, and have had PTSD (recovered-ish), and Tourette's, which is my mobility impairment, and why i got him in the first place. I got Mack (my SD) for mobility, but he's good for so many things...especially meeting people! People don't look at me for my weird movements and noises, anymore, but to smile at me and Mack! I guess you know the feeling...it's a good one. The smiles. I call it contagious-happy-smile disease...which is transmitted by the presence of a service dog. It makes 90% of people who look your way grin and almost garaunteed to make kids squeal "look mommy, puppy!!!!"
                              Tourette's Syndrome - motor tics of the legs, feet and back, which can make it difficult or impossible to walk

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