Well, it’s Service Cat Monday and time fur another infurmational, educational posty. We’ve answered most of da trainin’ questions ya’ll have asked. We’re goin’ to address da last one we received by e-mail today. ‘Bout a week ago mommy was talkin’ with one of our awnties who was askin’ ‘bout Raena and how her trainin’ was comin’ along. She expressed her “glee” in hearin’ ‘bout Raena’s drivin’ abilities. Now some of ya’ are fairly new to our bloggy and don’t have a clue why she would be “gleeful”. After all, our Service Cat posts have been very serious. Sure, me slipped a teensy bit of humor in each posty, but fur da most pawrt they were all serious business. Now, me specifically chose da word “glee” to describe her feelings cuz it means, open delight or purrleasure. She recalled to mommy some of da funny postys ‘bout me’s trainin’ sessions. And she asked mommy ifin she thought Raena would be more or less comical than me.
Of course, mommy can’t really answer dat question, cuz each kitty is different; and even usin’ da same trainin’ methods, each kitty will respawnd differently. Anyways, me got to meowin’ with mommy ‘bout this and ifin we don’t get anymore questions, then we thought it would be good to post a few of mes old trainin’ stories so you’ll know what kind of fun we’re in fur here at casa High. While trainin’ is serious business, there is fun to be had. Mommy says you have to remember to keep kitty innerested, and dat means ya’ can’t always be serious. Anyways, let’s get on with today’s posty. As with all our educational posts da following will be in human English. And ifin you’ve missed any posts in this series, purrlease click on da links at da bottom of this post.
So this week we received an email that asked about Service Animal “Vests” and our ability to perform our tasks from inside a stroller. This reader also asked why, if we’re harness and leashed trained, would we need the stroller? Let’s first talk about the “Vests/Harness”.
The Service Animal Vest can be purchased from many different places, including those agencies that certify/register Service Animals. (While researching for this post we found Service Animal Vests at several places including Walmart, and ranging in price from $8.00 to $150.00.) All of these agencies, including the reputable ones, charge a fee for registration. Sometimes those fees do include a Vest, but most often Vests are available to purchase for an additional charge. But remember, certification/registration is not required by law and is totally voluntary. Another thing to remember is that only dogs trained for a few specific tasks are even recognized by the ADA as Service Animals. Many years ago when all species could be recognized, sis Lexi was certified/registered and had a Vest. Neither the Registration or Vest made her any more of a Service Cat than me without them. And it didn’t stop people from asking what she did and how. The Service Animal Vest is merely an early visual signal to those around that an animal is trained to perform some life saving task for their handler and that you shouldn’t do anything to distract that animal. There are also decals, cards, stickers and other items one can purchase to display as well.
Now, why a stroller instead of us kitties walkin’ alongside mommy on our leashes? First we’ll say that mommy is so grateful that she has us and can have us accompany her wherever she goes. Altho’ mommy thinks some people scream “allergies” and don’t really have them, she respects others’ rights. And as much as mommy loves us, she doesn’t want to eat our fur, or anybody else’s for that matter. No matter how comfortable an animal may be in public, we are going to shed and our furs are going to float about until they land on something. And altho’ we are fairly large kitties, we are still much smaller than most rushing peeps, store buggies, etc.. Inside the stroller we are safe from handsy small peeps, careless phone chatting shoppers, diseases and filth on floors and parking lots that we could spread to mommy or each other and disease carrying insects and other animals. The stroller allows mommy to get her business done without having to worry about our safety. While out in the public, mommy doesn’t need a massage or to be helped out of the shower. She doesn’t need us to answer the phone or bring it to her. The thing mommy needs from us in public is to alert her before a Syncope incident.
Now, we want to make certain everybody understands what Syncope is. Mommy does not have seizures. The definition of Syncope is: A sudden loss of consciousness. Mommy hates for this to happen in public and does everything she can to avoid it. But the possibility always exists, so having us with her makes a world of difference. Being in the stroller allows us to be near mommy, while keeping our furs away from those who might find a kittys presence offensive. The material that makes up the stroller allows us to still see and smell any changes in mommys body chemistry and her to be able to see and hear us alerting her. There’s no big obtrusive scene being played out to draw attention to us. Most people don’t even notice our presence unless we’re standing in line or waiting for someone or something. Most people who truly have need of a Service Animal aren’t trying to draw attention to themselves or the animal. The stroller is very convenient for us, but it also allows us to respect the rights of others.
Well, we do hope this has cleared up any confusion about “Vests” and “Strollers”. We are in no way knocking the Service Animal Vest, but they’re not required by law. And because there’s no uniform code or governing body over these agencies, they don’t always guarantee the animal wearing them is actually a properly trained Service Animal.
Lessen we get anymore questions ‘tween now and next week, our next Service Animal Monday post will be a look back on some of mes comical wheelchair training. We’re getting ready fur Raenas training soon. Mommy’s already started cutting up some foam bumper pads in purr-purration. It is stormin’ here and our comments on WordPress hosted blogs are still goin’ to ya’ll’s spam folders. We would ask dat you purrlease check your spam folders fur us and approve our purrevious comments. There’s a couple blogs dat have done so and our comments are now showin’ up again on their posts. Mommy, Raena and me would like to remind all Americans to purrlease go out and VOTE tomorrow. We know a lot of you voted early, but fur those dat haven’t, tomorrow’s da day. We’re purrayin’ fur our Country, may Freedom continue to reign. God Bless America!!!
Till da next time…………………………………….Be Blest!!!
Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses
Deztinee and RaenaBelle