[nagdu] Going Downhill

Tamara Smith-Kinney tamara.8024 at comcast.net
Thu Apr 21 21:29:12 UTC 2011


I was too busy with the spinning in my head that my body was tyring to
follow to really notice what exactly happened that I didn't end up face
down, but I seem to recall there was a moving black curly thing keeping me
and maneuvering me out of the problem I'd just made for myself.  /grin/  At
least one of us has a brain.

Mitzi and I started out when she was a pup with her on leash and me on cane,
so she's used to that.  We still do short leisure walks like that, just to
be out together for a nice sniff 'n stroll.  /smile/  She's not quite so
busy wild as she was as a pup where her nose had to be into everything
everywhere all at once.  How she managed to do exactly that as far as anyone
could tell was beyond me.  /smile/

Then I noticed that the reason I wasn't getting hurt with all the busy-ness
going on that took my attention away from my cane -- when it wasn't somehow
up to no good in some sort of partnership with the leash -- was that the
hyperactive, out of control monster I seemed to think I was going to train
wasn't letting me get hurt.  She was already guiding me by nudging my cane
or blocking me or pulling me around stuff without taking an instant away
from any of the seventeen things she had her nose in.  /lol/  Couldn't
believe it, even when someone else suddenly noticed the same thing and we
both realized it had been going on for awhile.

I am very happy to report that she doesn't do that in harness.  Anymore.
Well, not much anyway...  /lol/

Tami Smith-Kinney

-----Original Message-----
From: nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nagdu-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf
Of Sean Moore
Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2011 8:54 AM
To: NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users
Subject: Re: [nagdu] Going Downhill

Even at my young age of 23 I don't think Franklin would let me do that with 
only a cane. He'd block me way too much.

Sean Moore and
Southeastern Guide Dogs, Franklin

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Tamara Smith-Kinney" <tamara.8024 at comcast.net>
To: "'NAGDU Mailing List,the National Association of Guide Dog Users'" 
<nagdu at nfbnet.org>
Sent: Thursday, April 21, 2011 11:43 AM
Subject: [nagdu] Going Downhill

> Hey!  How do all of you go down hills with your dogs without getting, you
> know, seasick?  Or is that just me?  /lol/
> Now that I don't have rain as much for an excuse not to get my lazy 
> backside
> out with my dog, I'm looking for a route to walk on this side of the Road 
> of
> Certain Doom.  The best and safest route to get some decent walking 
> exercise
> -- with sidewalks part of the way! -- is up a fairly steep hill.  Good
> exercise for the dog, too, since she has to drag me up the thing once I 
> wear
> out.  There's even a little spot where I can let her have some run play
> before we turn around to come back down...  Supposing I don't break my 
> neck
> falling on my nose.  /lol/  How I didn't literally fall on my nose the 
> first
> time -- when the effect was a real surprise -- is beyond me.  I  had to 
> sit
> down right where I was while the whirling sensation just kept building and
> building...  So I couldn't get up.  I've experienced the minor version of
> that on gentle downslopes, but never like that!  The only reason I didn't
> end up calling DD to come pick me up because I was too seasick to get home
> is because I am just too dang stubborn and have way, way too much pride.
> So.  By this spring, it seems I can think about taking the hill on again
> with getting seasick in advance, and I think this time I'll have a 
> strategy.
> /grin/
> So here's my plan, in general:
> 1.  Take dog on leash, use cane going up and coming down for added 
> reference
> point for balance to learn to maintain balance and proprioception on steep
> grades.
> 2.  When ready, use guide dog to go up the hill.  Take cane out before
> turning around, to use as reference point to judge grade.  Use cane to 
> come
> down.
> 3.  Repeat as necessary, removing cane tip from ground periodically to 
> build
> up number of steps to walk without reference point before falling on nose.
> 4.  Gradually build up until the cane on the ground is no longer 
> necessary.
> 5.  Start using guide dog to come down and see what happens.  /smile/
> Any comments, helpful hints, strong advice, smart remarks about what a 
> dolt
> I am?  /lol/
> Thanks!
> Tami Smith-Kinney

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