There are several different tasks I do in the kitchen for my mom. Ones that give her the ability to do a few things without the help of my dad.
These tasks also save her time. And help conserve her energy. So she has more time and energy to do fun things with me!
Do you know why the tasks I do for my mom helps to conserve her energy? It is because she doesn’t have to put forth as much effort to do things that are difficult for her to do.
My mom has limited use of her right hand and arm. And not very much strength on her left side. So for her to do things she has to get close and in just the right position. This takes some maneuvering with her chair which is time consuming.
And then when she gets positioned in just the right spot she has to use a lot of energy to do the task. It is so much easier and less time consuming for me to do it for her!
Not too long ago, I told you about one of these tasks. Do you remember? That’s right. The trash! If you need a refresher, check out A service dog helps with the trash!
Throwing trash away!
But there are a lot more tasks I do besides throwing away the trash. I’m sure you might be able to think of a few.
There are cupboard doors and drawers to open and close. And shelves inside the cupboards to pull out and push back in. The dishwasher door to push closed.
Pushing closed the refrigerator door!
And the refrigerator door to open and close. Ooops, I almost forgot, the freezer door to open and close, too! And I can even push closed the microwave door!
All of these tasks are done by me either tugging something open with a tug rope. Or pushing something closed with my nose.
I go by the position of my mom’s chair so that I know which door or drawer my mom wants me to open. If she were to sit in the middle of the floor and tell me “tug”, I would have to guess which tug rope to grab.
Tugging open a drawer!
My mom did teach me some new cues that help with knowing exactly what she wants. She loves teaching me new things as much as I love learning new things!
There is one place in the kitchen that could be a bit confusing for me to know which drawer needs to be opened. When her chair is in position for these drawers, I’d have to guess if she wanted the top or bottom one.
So, to make it easy for me, she taught me “top drawer” and “bottom drawer.” This lets me know which one to tug open. And then when she says “push”, I already know which one because it is already open!
The “top” and “bottom” drawers!
We have some cupboard doors that are a bit different from the rest. These are double doors. And there isn’t enough room for my mom’s wheelchair to be in a good position by the doors.
So, she taught me “open” which means I go to the doors and tug each one open. Then I back away so my mom can get in close to get her item. And I can even pull out the shelf if she needs something further back.
Tugging open one of the double doors!
Once my mom gets what she needs, she backs away. Then she tells me “close it” and I rush right in to push the two doors closed.
I also pick up anything that my mom drops. Well, anything but food items that aren’t in containers or packages. Because those I might accidentally eat before I give them to my mom!
When she drops something, I can deliver it to her in my usual ways of stepping up on her foot pedals. Or just putting my head on her lap. Depending on which way she prefers for the item I am delivering.
Giving my mom a dropped spoon!
But I also have a couple of other ways to give her something. I can put my paws up on the counter and give them to her. Or put my paws on the arm of her chair.
These ways work best if she is pulled up close to the counter. This way she doesn’t have to back up and turn her chair around for me to get in front of her. Again, saving time and energy.
So, those are a few of my kitchen tasks. Ways that make it easier for my mom to do things independently. I love helping my mom!
A video that shows you a few of my kitchen tasks!
Clint is such a good boy! I would love to know more about the ropes that you have attached to the cupboards. I took Sara Brueske’s Tricks class and have submitted videos through Advanced to AKC. I had never taught tricks previously and found it to be fun. I put a composite video together of our submissions to share with Folger’s breeder. Just for fun, I have included the link below. You will see that Folger can close a door – well not quite in the way that you would expect Clint to do it – but the task did get accomplished. 🙂 Now I am interested in the opening and closing of cabinet doors with nose, not feet! I am sure I could come up with a rope scenario of my own but seeing as you seem to have one perfected, I thought it would be great if I could make use of it.
Clint and I took Sara’s Tricks class (at bronze), too! It was so much fun. I LOVED watching you and Folger! You both did such a great job. And your composite video is awesome! I need to get Clint’s tricks videoed so I can submit them to AKC.
I will send you a message about the tug ropes.
Hugs and wags,
Brenda, Clint, and Buffy ❤️ 🐾 🐾