Yesterday Wiley and I were out doing what I call our ‘Wiley walk’. This is when Wiley guides me through my suburb until we get to a very popular dog walking area.
Once we get to the reserve I take Wiley’s harness, working collar and lead off and swap it with his recreational collar and lead. I then use my long cane (which I have purposely bought along) to navigate my way along the path.
Generally there are other people and dogs for Wiley to meet and greet plus lots of smells. It is usually a slow walk but I don’t mind as I am using my long cane and I want Wiley to enjoy himself.
When we get to to the end Wiley goes back into harness and guides me home.
Yesterday we were getting reasonably close to home when I heard the sound of children. I smiled and said hello. Then their mum asked if we were Jo and Wiley, I was very surprised that we were recognised. It turns out one of the little girls was in a class that I gave a talk to a few weeks ago.
Her mum said she had told her family about our talk and had passed on that you must not pat a dog that is wearing a harness. I was so delighted that she shared that information as well as remembered our names.
I stopped and took Wiley’s harness off so he could say hello to this lovely family and their new little puppy. After a nice chat the harness went back on and we continued on our way. I didn’t stop smiling all the way home.