It’s funny you know having a guide dog and it is great as well. People do the strangest things when they approach you with your dog. Most people are trying to help and that I appreciate but it is some of the funny stuff that I remember the most. When a person is legally blind and they depend on their guide dog to help them across the street they are also depending on their ability to hear. You listen for the sound of a car motor and if it is coming up beside you and sounds like it is going to pass in front of you then you stand still until it is safe. Usually Magnum would stand in front of me crossed over so I could not step down off the curb or get to close to the vehicle. My son traveled with me a lot when I walked and he tell me what was happening at times. For instance people would stop and wave me to go on. Now I know they were being kind and considerate, however, I could not see them wave and the dog just does not understand. Finally, they would go by and sometimes yell at me I was trying to give you the right of way. Please drive the way you normally do and let the guide dog do his thing.
One of the cutest funniest things I always loved to hear is when people yell out at me is that a “blind dog”, meaning a guide dog. I usually yell back no wonder I hit that last post, I didn’t know he was blind too! Another thing is when people yell out the window at the dog, things pretty boy, or come here if they are stopped at the corner. The dog is there as my eyes, if he went to everyone, I soon would be into trouble. Please don’t talk to the dog. He is not a pet he is a vital part of body, my eyes.
Of course there are those inside group meetings that can really cause problems. One time I was at a special meeting for ADA Advocacy in large restaurant where we were all seated at a round table. Now my friend Magnum and I arrived early so I could place him under the table without incident. The table soon became full with people and the meeting started. Magnum was very quiet dog and rarely ever moved but this time there was a lady close to him who had on sandals and he just had to sniff her and lick one of her feet. She got very upset at the man next to her and pulled her legs back. Of course I was not aware of what was happening. Magnum did it again only this time a little bit more vigorous. The lady looked at the man and said to him please stop this it is embarrassing. He replied to her I don’t know what you mean. Then his wife who was setting next to him bent over and said what you think my husband is doing. The lady totally embarrassed said if you have to know he is messing with my feet. At that point I caught on and said excuse me but may I introduce you to my friend who is under the table and raising up the table cloth they all saw Magnum my beautiful black lab. The woman laughed and I think the man gave out a sigh of relief. Those were the days of summer, fun, and Magnum. Take care when you see a blind person with a guide dog and remember we need to focus so don’t distract the dog or the blind person. If you are at a table and someone is licking your feet check it out first hand before you act.