Chrystal (Mason's mom) and Jeremy (my husband) worked on different commands with Danny and Murphy. They will need to help us with the dogs from time to time and need to know the commands as well as we do.
Chrystal and Danny
Jeremy and Murphy
Mason, Chrystal and Danny
Me and Murphy
Next it was out to the parking lot to practice getting in and out of our vans safely. After a couple of trial and error attempts to discover what would work the best, we found the perfect solution. I go up the ramp of my van and Murphy follows in behind me. Once inside the van, Murphy hops up on the back seat. I then unhook his leash from my wheelchair. I close the door and position myself in the driver's spot. Murphy then hops down and lays in the floor.
Murphy in his spot
Danny, Murphy, and Topper have all successfully loaded and unloaded into their new vans and been to better hurry. It's back inside to the classroom for a lecture on home safety.
Topper going in
Romana covers may issues and preventive ways to avoid these issues. It is quiet scary to think of all the dangers in our home for these dogs.
Today's lunch is provided by volunteer Kathy. She bought us chicken salad, pasta salad, fresh homemade bread, and a southwest medley. We aren't going to know what to do with ourselves after team training. We may all go hungry.
Murphy resting up
After lunch, we are joined by service dog team Jordyn and Eddie and Jordyn's mother Joey. Joey enlightens us on all the things they wish they would have known two years ago when they brought Eddie home from team training. It is a very beneficial lecture for all of us and we are grateful to have so many different support systems to lean on.
Jordyn with Eddie and Jerry
Ramona goes over a few home training issues we may run into over the next few weeks and how to handle them if they arise. She assures us again and agin that her and Tim are only a phone call away no matter the time of day. We are all so lucky to have Ramona and Tim with us every step of the way.
The volunteers are learning too
It's finally time. Each service dog team has been waiting months for this day to come. And it's here!! It's really here!! We are going home with our fur babies!!
Ramona and Tim follow us all out to the parking lot to see us off. I can't even begin to imagine the emotions they must be experiencing. On one hand I know they are so proud of how well the dogs have bonded with us and on the other hand I know they are letting a piece of their hearts go with us as we load our dogs into our vans.
Mason, Chrystal and Danny
Topper getting ready to head home
Murphy going home
Murphy is already understanding the loading process without as many commands, after just a few practice times. He is ready to go home.
Murphy leaving Goodwill
Murphy arriving home
I will never be able to express to Ramona and Tim how grateful I am that they chose me to be Murphy's forever mommy. They are trusting me with their baby. The baby they have nurtured since he was only 8 weeks old. The baby they have dedicated the last 2 years to. The baby they have modeled into an outstanding service dog. Thank you seems so insufficient. What I can tell them is today my family of three turned into a family of four because of Murphy.