Do you remember that Buffy has a Pawtograph? She and my mom created it soon after they started the blog. You can check out My “Paw”tograph! if you want a refresher on how Buffy made hers.
Since Buffy has a pawtograph, I asked my mom if we could make one for me. And you know what? She said yes!
A pawtograph is like an autograph that a person uses when they sign their name. But it is for a dog instead. And it is made with a pawprint. Because I can’t write with a pen! Doesn’t it sound exciting that I have my very own pawtograph?
My mom wanted something more than just a pawprint for the pawtograph. So for Buffy, and now for me, she uniquely made our name. And put it together with the pawprint. Which then became our pawtograph!
For Buffy, my mom had a little business-type card made with her pawtograph on one side. And on the back was her job, birthdate, and our mom’s name. Along with the web address for the blog. And is now having one made for me!
My mom has been talking about getting my pawtograph created. Ever since we’ve been partners! This way she could get me my very own cards to give out.
Earlier this week my mom pressed my foot onto an inkpad. Then had me step onto a piece of paper. And just like that, I had my pawprint!
For quite some time, she has been working on creating a unique way to showcase my name. She drew many versions before finally deciding on which one she liked best. And even with that, she wasn’t completely happy.
As I get to know more about my mom, I am realizing she is way too hard on herself. And doubts her abilities. I told her that I thought her drawing matched my personality perfectly!
When we are out and about, my mom likes to have something to hand out to people we encounter. Especially to kids. This way, they can learn a bit more about me. And visit the blog to learn even more.
I know all of you, my readers, would know not to call out my name, distract me, or pet me. But many people don’t know. When they see my beautiful brown eyes and luxurious yellow fur, they just want to interact with me.
Oftentimes, they have never seen a real working dog with their person. Other than maybe in a magazine or on television. So they are curious and want to touch me or get close.
But, as you know, this could be distracting for me. And unsafe for my mom. Do you know why it might be unsafe? If I’m distracted just as my mom is asking me to help her, I could miss the cue. And not realize she is needing my help.
As you can see, my mom put my real name on the card. But there are different thoughts on whether a service dog’s name should be shared. My mom says some handlers tell the real name of the dog when people ask. And others give a made-up name.
The back of my card!
The thinking behind this is if people know the dog’s real name, they could try to distract the dog by calling out the name. Or feel more empowered to tell the dog what to do because they know their name. So not sharing the dog’s real name could be a way of minimizing distractions.
But my mom looks at it differently. She knows she can not control the behavior of others. And there are far more ways of distracting a dog other than using their name.
If a person calls out the fake name of the dog, they aren’t learning why this is wrong. My mom feels that helping them understand the importance of proper service dog etiquette is far better than letting them continue their inappropriate behavior.
She tries to educate people. Sharing with them the reasons they shouldn’t call out my name, distract me, or pet me. And let them know what harm can be caused if they were to distract me.
Even though she tries to educate people on proper service dog etiquette, they don’t always pay attention. And sometimes they will still call out my name. Try to distract me. Or pet me.
My mom uses these instances as great training opportunities . . . for me! With my job, I know I am supposed to only pay attention to my mom. And not let people distract me. But sometimes I forget.
So if I become distracted, my mom reminds me to refocus on her. And ignore the distractions being caused by the people around us.
She has taught me to look at her if I hear another person saying my name. Or if they are trying to get my attention by making interesting noises.
I resist distractions and look at my mom!
And if they reach out to pet me, I might get a little distracted. But I know to turn my attention right back to my mom. Because I need to be ready to help if needed.
We practice these types of distractions often. So when we are in real-life situations, it is easier for me to remember where my focus should be. Although I do sometimes forget. Because I’m very friendly and love attention from others.
My cards have been ordered. And should be here soon. I am very excited to have my very own cards to give out to my friends. And people we encounter wherever we go!