I have been telling you guys that I am going to write a post about the stuff Keen and I use. Well, here it is!
First of all, I think that the good starter is a Service Dog. Some people get all the gear, but don’t have the legitimate service dog. That is highly frowned upon and shouldn’t be attempted. This is my Service dog, Keen, he is a greyhound/lab mix.
Next most important thing is treats. It doesn’t matter if your dog is a fully trained service dog because he/she will always have something to work on. Whether it’s to train him/her to stop getting into the garbage, or to just sharpen up their skills. So, I suggest having a lot of treats on hand.
Then there are the leashes. I have a short handle leash and a long 2 in 1 leash. the long one can be a regular five foot leash, or it can be clipped around my waist to create a hands-free leash. I use the long one more often, but I use the short leash for when I just have to make a quick run into the grocery store. It is very handy because when I let go, it doesn’t drag on the ground and get dirty, but long enough for me to hold it in my hand comfortably.
Then we finally get to the vest. This is Keen’s standard vest that he wears most days when we are out and about. Some people don’t like to have a lot of patches on their dog’s vest because they don’t find it necessary. “I have a ‘Service Dog’ patch on it, so why do I need to put any more on it?”
Well, I see my dog’s vest as being like a no trespassing sign on your land. If you don’t have one, you can be blamed for any accidents that occur on it. I think that the handler can’t blame someone for petting their dog when they needed to alert them to a seizure, if they don’t have a “Do Not Touch” patch on the vest. I have gotten a lot of sh*t from people when his vest had only one DNT patch on because there wasn’t one on both sides. now I find myself wanting to put more and more on his vests.
Now this is Keen’s winter vest. You might be thinking that I spoil my dog, but I’m not. I am saving his life by getting him a winter vest. Up in Montana, it can be 30 below for days at a time. Some days, nobody spends anymore time than they need to outside because it feels like just opening the door freezes your blood. So, I got him a winter vest and it’s turning out to be a good purchase.
The last thing I have found to be very useful is a clip on light, or in this case, a strap on light. Since Keen is black, he is often hard to see in dark places like the movie theater, a concert, or outside after dark. I originally got a white light one, but it didn’t do much to catch people’s attention. so I got this red one and people started to give me lots of space. They probably think it’s red because he’s dangerous, but I don’t care so long as they don’t touch him.
I hope you enjoyed this post and maybe found it helpful. I would love to hear about the things you think I should get that you find useful!