November 7, 2017

Two Days of Autism Service Dog Training Under Our Belts

Well, we are now on day two of twelve days of training.  Yesterday, at our first day of training, Brandon melted down right away. It wasn't a severe meltdown, but he did bite himself and was crying for about an hour.  That probably sounds severe, but the crying was not astronomically loud, and he was not trying to injure me.  In fact, he didn't want me to leave his side.  I had pulled him to the play room right off of the large training room at 4 Paws, and we decided to lay on the couch together and watch Miss Spider on YouTube.  If I moved an inch, he grabbed on to my leg in a panic that I was going to leave him.  

What caused this anxiety for him?  I can only speculate that part of the anxiety was that we were in a large space with lots of people and noise.  He had never been here before, and perhaps he thought we were going to leave him.  

I was heartbroken. Yes, I always feel bad for him (and sometimes me) when he’s  having a hard time, but I feared he was going to miss his special moment meeting Bingo.  Thankfully, as you can see in the video in my last post (here), he enjoyed meeting and feeding Bingo.  I didn't get the first second reaction, because I didn't want to miss the moment myself trying to get a video.  So, that video is a few minutes after that initial meeting.  They were both moments James and I will never forget!

4 Paws has a pretty cool playroom that has been a necessity for us to take breaks from the training room. It has also allowed Brandon to run around and play, making it easier to limit screen time. We break for lunch each day for an hour, but we’ve spent most of that time in the car.  As much as I can’t stand eating in the car, Brandon needs that quiet time in his safe place in his car seat. We tried going into Chipotle today, but he wasn’t having it. He is perfectly content to be in the car!

Tomorrow we get to bring Bingo back to the hotel room with us! I will also have some more pictures and video of Bing and Brandon working together in the coming days as we move toward more complex commands and training.

1 comment:

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