[nagdu] Navigating Ice

Tami Jarvis tami at poodlemutt.com
Sun Jan 5 00:09:31 UTC 2014


This is our second year of dealing with ice, too. I have the same sort 
of nervousness, which also causes me to make things worse for both of 
us. I got some nice walking boots with good tread this year, which has 
helped cut down on the slipping and sliding. I still find it hard to 
keep to a balanced walk, though, and in a lot of places, like parking 
lots, I'm freaked out about whatever else may be slipping and sliding 
around... And I feel blind in a winter hat because of what it does to my 
echolocation and stuff. Ridiculous! /lol/

Mitzi doesn't like to slow down, either, but I have noticed that she 
takes an interesting approach to ice and to the wind that likes to blow 
her around in these parts. She still wants to move faster than I do, but 
she also does a sort of zigzag dance that actually helps me stay 
balanced and cuts down on slipping for me. If I can get a grip on myself 
and go with her, walking is much easier. I'm working on it.

The tension in the harness handle can also help me balance, and the one 
time I started to take an *ss over teakettle slip, she pulled me 
upright. Whew! But she's only 54 pounds, and most of that is leg, so I 
don't like the idea of putting that sort of physical strain on her.

Part of our yard turns into an ice sheet this time of year, so that 
gives me a place to practice walking on that kind of surface without the 
dog so I can find my own balance. I keep my weight more forward than 
under normal conditions, which helps. If I remember to adjust that 
posture to how I walk with the guide dog, I seem to be more stable and 
can build confidence slowly.

To make up for being such a nervous nellie, I give Mitzi lots of extra 
praise and reward, too. It's not her fault I'm a dolt. /lol/

Don't know if that helps, but that's what I've learned so far. When I 
can't avoid the ice and wind, of course. That's still my favorite method 
of dealing with it. /grin/


On 01/04/2014 03:38 PM, Jessica Diaz PC wrote:
> Hello Everyone,
> The subject says it all. This winter is my second living here. It is the
> first time I have seen or walked on ice. It is scary. More than that, can
> someone provide things I can do to help Saunders? He won't slow no matter
> what I try and constantly bounces on his feet which I am sure mean they're
> cold. He won't ware his boots for anything so is there something I can use
> to make his feet feel better? I know slow is the key and I try but I think
> my nervousness doesn't help the situation. It sounds stupid but it is a
> foreign thing to me. Thanks so much for all the help.
> Jessica Diaz
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