[nagdu] 8th anniversary and Ben's Dog Day

Amber M thetraveler87 at gmail.com
Fri Sep 5 18:20:47 UTC 2014

Hi Tracy,
This was awesome to read! When I first met my guide, Yonkers, who has crossed the rainbow bridge now, he did not show a whole lot of affection. The first real interaction we had, he ate my debit card! And no, before you ask, it was not on the floor!
I learned very quickly how to clean up doggy puke. 
So, I wasn't convinced that he actually liked me… Until we went home, we're crossing a street, and he crossed sideways, on purpose, because a car was going at a time when they were not supposed to. It was kind of scary, actually. But he got me to the curb, the wrong curb, but a curb, just to get away from the car I have learned to honestly wait before actually jumping to the conclusion that just because my dog is not affectionate, he does not like me.

Sent from my iPhone

> On Sep 5, 2014, at 2:05 PM, Tracy Carcione via nagdu <nagdu at nfbnet.org> wrote:
> Yesterday was the 8th anniversary of Ben and my meeting.  8 years of Bennitude!  We had a rocky start, but came together eventually.  I thought I'd write about it.  I read lots of stories about dog love at first sight, pretty much, but I know there are other possibilities.
> On Dog Day afternoon, my classmates and I were hanging out by our room doors, listening to our classmates get called to the lounge, then pass by with their new dogs.  When it was my turn, I sat down in the lounge and my trainer said something like "here's Ben, a male black lab.  He's all black, with light brown eyes that really stand out against his black fur and are very expressive.  I think you'll like how sensitive he is."  (I never have figured out what she meant by that; by me, he's not a sensitive dog at all.) I said "Ben's on my list of great dog names!  Hi Ben!"  I took his leash, and we went back to my room to get to know each other.  He jumped on me a couple times, then completely ignored me.  After a while, we went out for our first walk on the leisure path, in what I think of as TSE's backyard. Ben was great, moving along at a nice trot.
> He always worked well, but continued to ignore me as much as possible.  He wasn't interested in cuddling or being petted.  In the van, he would lie as far away from me as his leash and space would permit.  The first time I got an idea he actually liked me was when we took pictures near the end of class.  The trainer took Ben away to get a solo picture, and he jumped all over me when he got back.  "They took me away, but you're my person and now I'm back!"
> It took me a while to figure out that Ben is just a very quiet, rather aloof guy.  He don't go for that girly kissy cuddly stuff.  A few pats is nice, then leave him to do his own thing.  His love is quiet love, but strong. He's gotten a bit more demonstrative over the years, but he's very self-contained.  He's a Jersey guy.  Passionate declarations of love are not his style.
> Anyway, I thought I'd share, in case someone else has a new dog who's taking a while to become attached.
> Tracy and handsome, lovable  Ben
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