Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Off Duty?

I’ve commented before that when walking Maggie in the neighborhood she feels it is her duty to greet everyone. Sometimes it makes for a “quick” walk a rather long one.
Last week on a visit to the Jersey Shore we were out walking. Approaching us was a couple, the man was in a wheelchair. I noticed the man look at Maggie and smile. I never assume anyone likes dogs but it was clear this man did. As we got closer he asked if he could pet Maggie. I replied yes. Maggie is very used to wheelchairs and as this persons lap is just at her head level she laid her head on it. His smile turned into a laugh. He then noticed her tag that says she is a therapy dog and asked about it.  I explained that we visit hospitals and nursing homes to help cheer people up. I also explained that once Maggie saw his wheelchair approaching she had already changed from a dog out for a walk to a therapy dog out to do a job.
I’ve witnessed this one other time with Maggie. We were invited to a BBQ and decided to take Maggie with us. Someone was there in a wheelchair. Maggie made it her mission to pull me over to this person to make sure they received a visit by her. I’m not sure who benefited more the person in the wheelchair or Maggie.
Of course after we finish with a visit Maggie looks to me for praise (she gets lots!!) A treats helps as well. Usually I ask the person we are visiting if they want to give Maggie a treat and most of the time they do.
Maggie being on the large size (75lbs) has large teeth but you’d be surprised how gently she takes the treat from your hand.

So even when I’m in a hurry but I know Maggie needs her walk I’ve learned when she gets something in her head to just let her take care of her goal as opposed to changing her mind!

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