learning to navigate the world, j-bear style

Training: Day 6 and 7

Not going to lie, it’s starting to all blur together so bear with me at this point.

The Fabulous Command of Day 6:

  • Under: When you bring a service dog to somewhere like a restaurant, the safest place for them to be is under the table. This is where the under command comes in. When I command Brooklyn to “under”, she walks under the table, turns around and lays down. It’s working great in practice but I will surely get back to you all on how it works in real world situations!

Meanwhile, all days are starting to take on a very predictable pattern (which is good): In the morning, we do obedience then practice tracking, then in the afternoons we have a full class session including questions and answers and new material. Day 7’s new material was grooming, health care, toys and treats.

It’s pretty incredible to realize how much you can know about your dog just by hanging out with them. Once you know your dog’s normal way of being it’s like knowing your child’s well-being with simply a glance or simple interaction. You just will know when something is right or wrong, and know when it needs to be escalated to emergency levels. We’ll be like parents to a new baby for a little while learning how to measure it but it’s reassuring to realize things will feel natural quite quickly.

The grooming of a Brooklyn is not all that complicated but requires regular maintenance. We learned about her ears, her nails, her coat, her eyes, her nose… We covered everything from ear cleaning to boot wearing and it was wonderful. I hope to learn how to properly dry her post bath before we leave but I know if I don’t get that chance our wonderful friends at The Dirty Doodle in Reading, MA, will help me learn it once we’re home.

I think I will save discussing toys, chews and various Day in the Life of Service Dog Brooklyn(tm) gear in another post because everything, from food to harness to toys to chews, is carefully chosen for various reasons. It’s fascinating to me and hey, it may even be good for people to consider for their pets too! You care for a service dog much in the same way you would care for a very expensive vehicle: you want the finest care to keep them at their peak health and demeanor. If they are not feeling their best or looking their best, their public impression will be quite poor, something that is counterintuitive to what we are doing when we use Brooklyn as a social bridge for Jacob.

I am brain fried so here’s some pictures 🙂


I’m at school on Sunday, ma. NOT HAPPY.


Just posing to cheer up a friend!


Waiting to track. Notably, J hates tracking training :/ He hates being out there waiting.


She finished eating and did this with her bowl. Wut.


  1. Sharon Leali

    Love reading your info!

  2. Joanna

    I love reading your posts. Takes me right back to our class (other than the tracking part for us). I always compare Oreo to a car as well so it’s funny you mentioned that! And the grooming is another thing that I always want Oreo to leave a good impression with…for example, when Tess got transferred to the ICU I took Oreo to the groomers and had her fully groomed in order to be as clean as possible in such a sterile place. The nurses all laughed at me when I told them but also told me they really appreciated that I’d thought about it. 🙂

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