Fun with planes, trains, automobiles and the odd coach

Waggy tail! Guide dog Fletcher, here, back from my mini adventures on all sorts of transport. They’ve been great fun. I know planes, trains and automobiles might not sound that exciting. But they are. Really.

As an assistance dog, I have exclusive access to many places. I got to see all sorts of planes, old and new, at Duxford Air Museum. Check out the photo with me by a Lancaster bomber. I can just imagine flying one.

Me guide dog Fletcher in front of a plane at Duxford

Trains are fun too.

I make sure my human gets safely on and off trains. We’ve only done it twice. Have to keep an eye on them as I don’t want them falling off the platform or tripping up when they’re trying to get onto a train. I even keep a look out when they’re sitting down. Just in case and like in the photo. Before fitting in a quick nap.

Me guide dog Fletcher on train floor looking up

I’ve also been on a steam train. It was during my summer holidays and I was on the Sir Nigel Gresley on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. I liked the smell of the coal dust. Great for sniffing.

Me guide dog Fletcher with my human in front of Sir Nigel Gresley steam train

Cars are wonderful for snoozing in.

I’m not so keen to jump in car boots. But riding on the back seat with my own travel seat belt (I’ll tell you more about my gadgets and accessories another time) is great. Just like yesterday in the car of my human’s friend.

Me guide dog Fletcher on car backseat

It’s grand being chauffeur-driven. I can snooze away to my heart’s content. And yes, I do snore. Only a little.

Finally, as many customer-assistance folks call my human a V.I.P. (I think it means Visually-Impaired Person or Very Important Person), I thought I could be one too. Very Important Paws. And as such, I reckoned it was time for an upgrade.

So when it came to travelling on a coach, no floor for me. The seat beckoned and up I jumped. Time to be top dog. Got a great view too. Unfortunately, no paparazzi to capture my moment of glory.

But I had forgotten that my Guide Dog trainer, Adrian, was doing some top-up training and had come along for the ride. Apparently, I was being naughty. I’m not allowed on furniture and he made sure I was soon back on the floor. It was the safest place for me. Also pretty comfortable, to be honest. And, I quickly fell asleep to the hum of the engine.

Hmmm. Bit sleepy now, come to think of it. I know I had an extra hour in bed as the clocks went back yesterday. But you can never get enough sleep. So that’s it from me, time for another snooze…

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(c) pawsatthekerb™, October 2015.

Doing my bit for interspecies relations

Woof woof! Guide dog Fletcher here with waggy tails (or in human speak, tales) from meeting other animals.

Now I love humans. Particularly my humans who I call human no. 1 and human no. 2. They keep me topped up with treats, fuss and cuddly toys (although I could always do with more). And I get to take human no. 1 out to places where I have exclusive access as an assistance dog. It’s great fun.

Oh and I love all you wonderful folks who support Guide Dogs. And also any friends of my humans who give me lots of fuss. But this post is not about humans.

I’ve met sheep and a bunny.

Yes, really.

Me guide dog Fletcher in front of two sheep

The sheep were a bit boring. They seemed more interested in grass than me and kept their distance. As evidenced by my photo. But we did agree that life was good. Well, least that’s what I think they said, I’m not very good at baa-speak.

Me guide dog Fletcher with bunny Bouffe

My bunny encounter was much more fun. Apparently bunnies like to rub noses and, by luck, my bunny etiquette was up to speed. We nuzzled together. I did my best to be gentle as this bunny couldn’t see very well (just like my human). His name’s Bouffe and we’re now friends. He even blogged to say so; check out Bouffe’s blog post.

Of course, we dogs like to sniff and rub noses too. Just like on Saturday, when I met 2 barking dogs who belong to my human’s osteopath. No time for play though and I was most disappointed.

Me guide dog Fletcher with 2 dogs

Now, I’ve been told that my nose looks as though I’ve spent far too much time sniffing. It’s black around the edges with pink in the middle. It appears as if I’ve rubbed out most of the black bits. What do you reckon? Must come from sniffing out all the best news from the streets and grass just for you…

Keep up to date and follow my blog. Or let me know if you like my posts by leaving a pawsome comment.

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(c) pawsatthekerb™, October 2015.

A wet and wonderful week

Woof woof, guide dog Fletcher here! Glad you could join me.

Wasn’t it a wet dark start to the week with all that rain?! Seems the rain is out again today. Now I like the rain. And as a guide dog, I go out and about in all weathers keeping my human safe with paws at the kerb™. Anticipating their every need. For example, I’m very good at tracking down seats just in case they want to sit down when the rain stops. See I’ve even got a photo to prove it.

Me guide dog Fletcher by a blue seat

Mind you, I’m not so keen on puddles and will avoid them if I can. I like to zig zag round them. Much to my human’s delight because where I go, they follow. It’s been a wonderful week.

Of course, wet weather = wet Fletcher.

I don’t stay wet for long because, as soon as I’m inside, I do a great wet dog shake. But, according to my human, I’m not that good at getting dry. I need the towel treatment. I’m mean, honestly, do I have to? A towel on my head is not a great look. You’ve only got to glance at the photo to agree. And yes, I know I’ve got my cuddly toy with me. But still.

Me guide dog Fletcher under a white towel

So, my human’s keenness for towels might have something to do with wet Fletcher = smelly Fletcher.

I have a fantastic “eau de wet dog” smell. Every dog has their wet dog smell. Mine stands out.

And now for the science bit (I’ve always wanted to bark that out. Got a grand education at Guide Dogs’ school. And it’s getting topped up by my human). According to the American Chemical Society’s video on canine chemistry, I have micro-organisms in my fur like yeast and bacteria which produce “sticky volatile compounds”. They’re there all the time and giving me a bath won’t get rid of them. Actually a bath will make the smell. Because any water, bath or rain water, “liberates” these “sticky volatile compounds” from my fur enabling them to get right up your nose.

Lastly, to compensate for any possible distress that a blog post about wet dog smells might have evoked, I’d like to remind you that I’m pawsome. Quite literally. If my paws aren’t at the kerb, then they’ll often be outstretched in friendship. Like in the photo.

Me guide dog Fletcher with my paws up

Join me on my adventures and follow my blog. Hopefully you’ll find them little bursts of happiness…

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(c) pawsatthekerb™, October 2015. Updated November 2015.