Welcome to Puppies and Life! This blog is about my life as a teenage puppy raiser...enjoy!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Mall Time Ups and Downs

Sometimes it really surprises me how people will react to Petey and I in public places. A lot of times we get people coming up to us with views that are polar opposites, and today we had both happen within seconds of each other.

My family and my friend and I went to Vaughan Mills today; I had to get an outfit for my cousin's wedding next week. There were a LOT of kids there today for some reason, even more than usual. At first there was a lot of pulling, but Petey settled down pretty nicely. I find that while he can get very crazy around adults, jumping, etc., he really knows how to behave with kids, especially with toddlers-maybe he thinks he's one of them :P

Anyways...today, while me and Petey were waiting outside a shop for my parents to come out, these two little kids started screaming to Petey. They were screaming (very very loudly) "HI DOGGY! HI DOGGY!" And I thought that was annoying- it got worse quickly. They quickly approached and crouched right in front of him taunting and teasing him. They would reach out their hands to pet him (without permission) and would scream shrilly and run away when he moved. To Petey's credit, he only tried jumping twice. After a minute or so of this, I got VERY annoyed and was looking around for their parents- I located their mother a few feet away just watching her daughters behave like this, screaming loudly and not behaving well at all. My six month old puppy was behaving better than these 7 0r 8 year olds. So I just walked away and they didn't follow.

I sat down on a nearby bench, being angry, when less than a minute later, I noticed an elderly lady standing a bit away, explaining to her granddaughter what a dogguide was. We smiled at each other, and I could hear a bit of what she was saying. "When this dog grows up, he is going to be very special and help someone". I cheered up considerably and that is when a security guard walked up to me. "Excuse me, is this dog a special one?" I thought of the many possibilities I could answer back with but just said "Yes, he is in training to be a dog guide". So she said okay and left. Right after that, the elderly woman and her granddaughter approached. The woman asked me what the security guard had said to me, and I told her. She responded with "Why would she ask that? Of course he is special! He even has his jacket on!" I just laughed in response, but really? That was exactly what I needed.

I know it sounds like such a small thing, but it really made my day.


Blogger 8675309 said...

Oh my gosh, Nat -- can I just tell you, we get the "I'm sorry, ma'am, you can't bring a pet in here" speech ALL. THE. TIME. That's when Lomax is wearing his jacket AND I'm wearing my Guide Dogs of America nametag! And they often wait until I'm already seated at the restaurant or have a basket full of items I'm going to purchase.

I think people don't read, and I'll bet they're required to ask so if anything happens, they can legally say, "The person SAID it was a service dog!"

(Granted, when they call me "ma'am," that tends to set up my reaction immediately! Not helpful. I am *NOT* a "ma'am.")

But I get some of those nice comments, too. Doesn't it do wonders? I don't know how it is at your school, but at GDA we're always being reminded that educating the public is also part of our "job" as volunteers. For me, that makes the nice comments even more rewarding, and the lame comments more tolerable.

I'm sure you and Petey are excellent ambassadors for your school!

6:50 p.m.

Blogger M-Fax said...

thank you for all your comments!

6:12 a.m.

Blogger The Dog Blog said...

There's a loser in every mall, but there's sometimes winners,too.

9:12 a.m.

Anonymous Liz said...

Phew, what a day you had - in a matter of minutes! I wish I could take Rudy to the mall, like Petey. But, Rudy would go nuts and misbehave very badly, unlike Petey. I'm glad you were feeling better - talking to nice people, helps.

6:48 a.m.

Anonymous Nelliesmama said...

Yep,even us handlers get the same reactions from people. I think some people shouldn't have kids or keep THEM on leashes,lol!

Like everyone said Nat,the nice comments make up for the bad ones.
Hugs to you and Petey,

Crystal & Nelson

9:57 p.m.


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