An Adventure In Test Taking

by Bunny Hound on
Bunny here at the keyboard writing about my weekend trials and tribulations.

Saturday was the hottest day of the year here so far in our corner of the world, so I was not terribly disappointed to see Mom and Dad go off to training with Küster early in the morning.  I am not a fan of hot weather and staying at home in bed with the cold air blowing suited me just fine.  We didn’t even take our evening walk until about 10:30 that night.  I figured that it was going to be a very lazy evening.

Sunday morning confirmed my belief that the weekend was going to be laid back and restful.  I began pondering what I would have to tell everyone about in my blog post.  Mom and I did a little test training practice, we took a few pictures and life was pretty much calm and laid back.

I did think it was a little odd that I got the full beauty treatment as part of our slow morning, but it was nice to be fussed over.  I had my nails done, my teeth brushed and a spritz of White Dalmations.  Nobody else was getting special treatment, so I just soaked it all in as my due as the chief princess in residence.

A Quiet Moment -- Tales and Tails

A Quiet Moment

Then, after turn out and dinner, Mom took me out to the car by myself.

A few of my things were packed, and I saw that the camera was in the back seat.  It’s not unusual for us to go out for a Sunday afternoon photo session, so I relaxed on my bed and waited for the modeling session to start.  However, that wasn’t what happened.

I suppose I should have paid closer attention to the fact that Mom spent so much time getting ready for us to go.  I also should have taken closer note of the fact that she looked a little green around the gills.  However, sometimes you just notice things in hindsight.

Off To My Next Appointment -- Tales and Tails

Off To My Next Appointment

It turns out, we were on our way to take the therapy dog test.

I wasn’t too worried about it.  I mean, I graduated at the top of my obedience class and I’ve been visiting humans in the nursing home and at hospice for most of my life.  This test was just a formality.  However, it meant a lot to my human, so I wanted to make her happy.  Mom says that she isn’t good at test taking, but I was determined to help her though it.

There were nine dogs set to take the test, and it was about two hours’ drive from our house.  They said that those of us who had to travel would get to take the test first.  I’m not sure if that made Mom feel better or not, but it did give her less time to stress about it, which I take as a good thing.

We went in and got all checked in for our test. I had my paperwork in order and the money we needed to pay to take the test.  I had a good collar on, my nails painted and a six foot leather leash.  Mom had on a pair of lucky shoes and her lucky unicorn bracelet.  As far as I was concerned, we were all ready to take the test.

Cuddle Time -- Tales and Tails

Cuddle Time

We were in the first group who got to take the test, since we lived farther away.

I could feel Mom’s tension on the end of the leash.  She was worried that we might have trouble on the sit/stay, the leave it command (when a person offers you food right under your nose) and that I might be too friendly with another dog when we had to greet someone with their dog.  At the start, before the test started, the evaluator spent some time talking to all of the people who were taking the test.  I think Mom was wanting the test to just get started already.  I did my best to ignore her, because I thought it would make her less nervous, but it turned out that just made her more uptight.

Anyroo, soon, it was time for us to go and get in our chair in the waiting line for the test elements.  The first one was that you have to stand by the check in table and let the evaluator inspect your ears, coat, feet and tail.  When she went to pick up my foot, she told everyone there that I had pink toenails.  I liked her right off the bat.  Things were pretty easy during the first parts of the test.  We got to the sit/stay and down/stay part of the test, and Mom took in a shaky breath.  I admit, there are a few occasions when I decide I don’t want to sit if there’s no treat to be had.  However, I did sit and stay and I looked darned cute doing it.  The down/stay was a piece of cake.

After that, I had to do a heeling pattern on a loose leash and walk through a group of people who had different medical equipment, including a bucket that they dropped on the floor and a person running through yelling.  I thought she was a little odd, but I certainly didn’t loose my cool.  I let everyone who wanted to pet me have a turn and then I pranced back to our seat when it was over.

From Nose To Toes -- Tales and Tails

From Nose To Toes

The other elements went by pretty easy and then we got to the “leave it” part.

Mom wasn’t worried about us walking past the food on the floor, but a person offering a fresh Milkbone to me is another level of difficult.  I admit, I did sniff it, but Mom said I couldn’t have it, so I left it alone.  The evaluator made me do it twice to be sure I could really do it, and I did.  It was tough, but I ignored it.

Finally, our last tough trial was going to be greeting someone with another dog.  Mom got me ready beside her and we walked up to meet them.  I didn’t even look at the other dog.  I think Mom was in a bit of shock.  Honestly, I thought I might have to lean on her to keep her standing up, but she kept going through her shock and surprise.

There were a couple of things we had to do after that, but it was super easy stuff and I had no trouble with any of it.  The evaluator complimented all of us after the test and said she’d never had a nicer group of dogs take the test.  She said normally 1/3 of the dogs don’t pass, but all five of us in my group did great.  I admit that I was a proud and happy hound.

Dad was supposed to take pictures during the test, but he forgot.  He said that as soon as the evaluator saw my pink toenails, he knew that we nailed it.  I think my human is still in shock that we really passed.  I know she was really worried about it, but I carried her through, because that’s what a team is for.  It’s true that when we visit, I’m the one who gets all the attention, but the truth is, Mom is an important part of things, too.  She helps me know who to say hello to and who to leave alone, and she scouts things out for possible dangers so that I can do my job of greeting the crowd.  We celebrated with a stop at the Golden Arches Supper Club where Mom got a Mocha Frappe and I got an order of French fries.  Life is good and I am proud that we are now an official therapy team!

On The Job -- Tales and Tails

On The Job

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  • Well done, Miss Bunny! Congratulations to you and your mom!

  • Sue Dyer

    Way to go Bunny:) So glad you were able to support your mum through the test.

    Loving your pink nails:)

    Hope you are all having a good day.

  • Christine Sterling

    YAY! Congratulations! 🙂

    I think those tests are harder on humans than pups!

    Monty and Harlow

  • Well done Bunny – we knew you could both do it – we are so proud of you both 🙂

  • Britt

    Terrific! Congratulations!

  • Two French Bulldogs

    Oh Bunny being fussed over is never a problem. Look at your beautiful nails
    Snorts,
    Lily & Edward

  • I am so proud of both of you. Great job!!!

  • Congrats!!!!!

  • Casey the Boxer

    Congrrats! I knew you could do it, but Mommas are just nervous nellies sometimes.

  • Maryruth Ginn

    Yeah!

  • Sara, oreo & chewy

    Wonderful! Very, very proud of you two!

  • jan

    Congratulations. Humans do need the confidence of dogs to take tests.

  • rottrover

    Bunny!! We are so proud of you! We never doubted for one minute that you wouldn’t pass, but we understand about anxious humans! You go, girl!!

    -Bart, Ruby and Otto

  • Emma

    We knew you could do it if any dog could! Congratulations!

  • harrispen

    Congratulations to both of you.

  • Wahoo! Congrats! I was sure you would pass, of course, but it was interesting to read about the testing parameters. They’re actually a bit different from the ones Emmett and I did for Delta Society. So proud of you both!

  • M. K. Clinton

    Bunny!! That is so awesome! I have to admit that I wasn’t one bit worried about you passing. We are all very proud of you down here on the bayou! ♥♥

  • Bunny, darling! You ar so very beautiful with those pink toenails! What shade o you buy!I’m very happy that you took the time to tell us all about the terribly nervous time that you had with Mom and Dad at the testing center, and of course the french fries! I’m so glad that you held Mom up throughout the test!

  • Leslie Flanders Balcerak

    Bunny, I have tears in my eyes because I am sooooooo proud of you and Mommy! We knew you would make us greyhounds proud…and super proud we are!!! xoxo Aggie Mae

  • The OP Pack

    Mega congrats to you, Bunny, and of course Mom too – you make a great team!!!

    Woos – Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning

  • Jackie Bouchard

    Whoohoo! Congrats! We knew you could do it! And French fries!! What a great way to celebrate! (Rita could pass the ‘leave it’ test with a Milkbone. She’s super snooty about her treats. Not sure she’d pass if it was a Lamb Lung Puff!)

  • I am SO happy!!! The part about the pink nails was awesome but we know that your amazing training and temperaments were what nailed it!

  • Great to read the full account of your adventure Bunny 🙂 Congratulations, I’m very pleased you’re now official! I don’t know how long the sit stay is but even if Beryl could do everything else she’d fail that one. And I’d have to have a duvet for her to lie on to do a down stay. You’re a star Bunny 🙂

  • Jan K, Wag N Woof Pets

    Congratulations, Bunny, and Mom!! Great job. I’m glad at least one of you wasn’t nervous. If only you could have told her “I got this” ahead of time! 🙂