Monday, April 30, 2012

Bus Rides & the Big City

Today was another first for Banyan on his journey to become a service dog for Jeremy. We decided today was the day to take a bus with Banyan from Lakewood, WA up to Seattle. It was a little over an hour ride to & from Seattle. Banyan did AMAZING! He walked right on the bus like he was suppose to be there. He fell asleep after the first ten minutes on the way to Seattle.

He laid down right at my feet and kept them nice & toasty for me!

After we arrived in Seattle he looked around a lot at all the people & vehicles. But he stayed with me and his two trainers at all times. At one point when we three ladies split up to look at different things he actually became slightly distressed. I think he thought he was protecting all three of us from the big bad city people. We had fun seeing the oldest Starbucks around.

Then we walked over to eat lunch at a wonderful little place that made the most amazing macaroni & cheese I had ever tasted. I only had a small portion since it was not on my diet, but so glad I ate it- so yummy! Banyan laid by  my feet during the quick meal. Then off we went to walk down to Pike Place Market. The crowds where not to bad but definitely  a lot of foot traffic. He handled it like a pro! He got a little excited when we had a Chihuahua on one side of us & a Seattle Guide Pup in training on the other. But he never pulled to go visit just really wanted to look at them both! His favorite part of the day was watching the "tossing of the fish" when someone placed an order. He loved it!
Here is a quick snap shot of some of the pretty flowers we saw.

Soon we made our way into the shopping mall with the glass elevator. Banyan did his up & pushed the elevator button with his paw to open the door. Usually we would want his nose to do the pushing but we where super excited as this was his first attempt at doing this task. He didn't seem to mind the glass elevator as we have ridden in one before. As we trotted through Nordstroms one of his trainers thought that Banyan could carry her Starbucks bag for her. We gave it to him & off he went with her coffee! He loved doing this! We called him back & he handed it to me very gently- super pup! Stephanie was able to get a short video on her phone. I hope she can upload to our FB page later. After shopping it was time to head back to the bus stop & our ride home. We where all worn out from the very windy day. We lucked out and got the larger bus with room to spread out. He laid down and fell promptly to sleep. 

Over all for his first experience at city life he did so great! I hope to repeat this at least once a month now so he becomes a lot more familiar with crowds & public transportation. Banyan needs to be super comfortable with all these things. Jeremy will never drive a car & most likely at some point when he is older rely on the bus to get around town. Our biggest thing to work on is most definitely ignoring other dogs. Today there was no pulling but he was wearing his gentle leader. I know he will get it in time with age. I am just so glad to check another big task off our list! We conquered the bus & Seattle.

Resting outside the cutest little store we found full of doggie goodies.

1 comment:

The Service Pups said...

How wonderful! Sounds like Banyan did well. We had a conversation with the vet techs yesterday about dog distractions. They said what we have always said the hardest thing to teach is to ignore and proper greetings. Specially with highly social dogs. They agree it is age and it takes time to train.

I think it is wonderful Banyan did well with the city bus. Not sure how our Loula & Bear would do. Since we live in a small town we really don't have city buses. That is Maine. You have to travel south of maine to get to a city.

Keep up the good work! ;D