Saturday, 27 August 2011

A Big Thank You - know who you are

A big thank you to all my Blogger readers and writers out there

I cannot believe that my Blog has had 22,202 hits...people are reading it from all over the world from Morocco to Japan - India to Skegness - please keep reading and sharing and enjoying....and learning.

Monday, 15 August 2011

The Audio Boos

AudioBoos are an audio Twitter - and I just love them.  I have a Twitter connection at the top of the Blog page but I have noticed that the AudioBoos do not seem to play from this Blog page so I've listed a few below.  They were great fun to do.. let me know what you think...and if they a blind person I can just about use them..the application on the computer is much better and comprehensive than the App for the is early days  and the developers are still working on it...enjoy the Boos

Interview with Lorne about his raising funds for Guide Dogs..
Good morning from Renton
working from home in the sunshine

Sunday, 14 August 2011

One year on....

Ian being a big sook and offering Renton a nibblet for being a good boy

It’s hard to believe it’s nearly a year since the Guide Dog Association brought Renton for his matching visit with me. Basically, this is when they bring the dog for a test drive. It’s at this point when you decide whether this particular dog is the right one or not. 
This can involve a number of factors. Like: walking speed, size, breed and temperament. Admittedly, it’s hard to draw any firm conclusions from such a short meeting, but often it’s best to follow your gut instinct and get some further background from the instructor. 
However, it’s always best to look between the lines as guide dog trainers can be a bit like estate agents. 
“The dog is very keen” 
Translation -  they’ll drag you off your feet.

“He responds well to firm handling.” 
Translation -  you’ll have to wrestle him to the ground if a cat goes past.

“The dog shows great caution at an obstacle.”
Translation - dog requires some kind of bribery usually food, to get them past anything. Even then they’ll require counselling for their nerves.
I am not saying that it has been plain sailing. He has had plenty of his own challenges to overcome. Like his suspicions and hate of cats, horses, small dogs, [not large ones he’s not stupid.] squirrels. He is a bit too enthusiastic when people come to the door, but we are working on this also.  (do you like my estate agent speak there...translate..he barks the house down until you are deaf!!!...anyway other than those, Renton who had his 3rd birthday last Wednesday  is maturing nicely  and it feels that I’ve been working with him for years.
Talking about his barking... this has been new to us..we are a quiet house and Moss rarely barks, far to much like hard work for a Labrador. However, Renton likes to bark at dogs going  past the gate, the postman, [particularly the postman.] visitors to the door. We can quieten him down a bit and then he coughs and splutters instead.

Renton sitting at the window watching for someone to bark at!
We have had loads of laughs with him, and I mean loads, he is incredibly intelligent and caring even to Moss. (which I've talked about before)
Moss and Renton with Ian at the front of the house

Moss is still not sure about him. Renton is far to fussy and loud for Moss (the Buddhist dog) He tends to put up with Renton, but we noticed that they have started to lie together out in the grass..and run down to the gate maybe there is a change happening.

So..from this sad dog who arrived, not long from the kennels, missing his handler, not eating anything and wanting to stand in a dark corner in the bathroom..we call this his ubend phase!..he was a bit disorientated at first and I think it has taken this full year for him to finally feel confident and at home..His work, however has always been good...but, I now have this big bouncy, Gucci pawed bear of a dog..Renticus Giganticus, his guiding work is just brilliant  and we both love him to bits.


Monday, 8 August 2011

The Cost of Caring

Nicola my camera person has managed to put our latest film on to the internet. The film was completed for Newsnight Scotland on BBC2 Scotland.

 This is part one which looks at the Cost of Caring

Let me know what you think.......

My first Golfing Cup win at the Scottish Pairs

My first Golfing Cup win at the Scottish Pairs

Championship Scottish Blind Golf Society..

Ian wearing his Greg Norman hat and holding the Golf Trophy

I was partnered by my sighted  golfing partner Paul Bell.  It was the last competition of the season and we both decided to just relax and enjoy it....there were a few strange hits...the ball hit off a rake and rebounded onto the green...and then we won...and it was just great.  Alan White the Golf Pro at Lanark Golf Club has been giving me lessons...he keeps up to date with all the new techniques of teaching blind people about balance while hitting the ball and so on.....and his hard work has paid off hey..we won!!!