Australian Support Dogs ASDOG

Australian Support Dogs ASDOG
Beastie trying her best to impress but she’s not an assistance dog, she’s a hairy pal!

Australian Support Dogs ASDOG

Our own dog performs no assistance role, she is solely a loved family member. I have often said that she could open the fridge door and make a ham sandwich but only if it was for her own consumption! That’s her level of self interest. We call our dog ‘Beastie’ as she has a shaggy coat that along with her large size gives the appearance of being truely unruly. She is in fact a sweetheart but quite beyond training to assist anyone. I mention Beastie because she is my point of reference, she highlights to me the skills and obedience required to be an assistance dog. Assistance dogs are really rather special at what they do which is why I’m so supportive of this organisation.

Australian Support Dogs ASDOG is a not for profit organisation that raises, trains and places accredited assistance dogs with people with disabilities. Assistance Dogs learn an array of skilled tasks to give their recipients the remarkable gift of greater independence and enhanced quality of life.

I have met several assistance dogs alongside their owners and they make remarkable teams. With an assistance dog the owner can achieve a task or chore that eludes the individual alone. Task attempts and achievements all need a doggie treat but that’s a fair reward!

The support dog recipients that I have met have also commented on the companionship the dog offers as well as its task orientated skills. A dog is widely known as man’s best friend, an assistance dog becomes a working best friend as we succumb to their hairy charm.

Australian Support Dogs – What they do

ASDOG provides professionally trained assistance dogs to people with disabilities free of charge. Each puppy progresses through a 2 year training program to prepare them for their future role as an assistance dog. Beginning in the home of a volunteer puppy raiser, the assistance dog journey is founded on a happy home environment and an abundance of social opportunities! Dogs in training then participate in a 12 month advanced program of intensive obedience, skilled tasks and public access training before being matched with a recipient and undergoing the team training required for a proficient working partnership.

Australian Support Dogs – How they do it

ASDOG was established with the generosity of public donation and a compassionate and dedicated volunteer base. Today they continue their proud history of giving back to the community that supports them. ASDOG sincerely thanks its supporters on their website, supporters who give the puppies the rewarding opportunity of growing up to be accredited assistance dogs.

Monetary Donations

ASDOG could not raise and train assistance dogs without the support of the general public. With no government funding, community support forms the foundation of the organisation. Donations make it possible for them to continue this service provision for people with disabilities. Please donate here.

Further Reading – Not a dog blog

 Australian Support Dogs ASDOG
Good try Beastie, you’re a hairy pal !

Raising funds and awareness for the differently-abled helps carers too! #City2Surf

I signed the form that Emily assertively presented to me and realized I was; chief supporter, responsible carer, sandwich maker and jelly bean monitor for her City2Surf team on Sunday, August 9th, 2015.

From Hyde Park the course is 14 km through to the finish line at Bondi. I have not been involved in previous races but you can’t live in Sydney without knowing about the City2Surf Heartbreak Hill. Discard any visions of weeping lovers as they are dumped along the wayside or broken-hearted couples clutching their heaving chests as they wave tearful, red-eyed farewells. No, Heartbreak Hill threatens the thigh and calf muscles of all the participants as it has a false summit. What appears to be the hill-top is actually only a corner on a continuing rise. The undulations that follow through residential streets keeps everyone literally on their toes!

As the ink dried on my signature I rushed to Google the race site. I had to deep breathe through my alarm as I read…… Elite Wheelchair Athletes: This Start Group is for elite wheelchair athletes only. Athletes must be in a racing chair to compete in this Start Group and who will aim to complete the course sub 38mins.

38mins!  SUB 38mins!

Let’s go back to the beginning – Emily wants to raise awareness and funds for ParaQuad. An organisation that supports people with spinal cord injury in the community. As a ParaQuad member Emily could apply and was granted a scholarship which she put towards her University fees. Returning to University was an important milestone within Emily’s recovery goals.

ParaQuad supports life choices after spinal injuries. It also supports carers because if it aids Emily, it aids me as her full-time carer. With increased  resources and support Emily is empowered with more independence heading towards a positive future with opportunities.

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On our first training session we averaged 5 km an hour so we should finish the City2Surf course  in 3 hours. Add in a sandwich and jelly bean pit stop and maybe a finish time of 3.5 hours would be more realistic. Does that help put the elite wheelchair athletes into perspective!

Emily and her mate Cobie are determined to push their way through and enjoy the success that comes with a challenge. If you would like to support them and their carers by donating to ParaQuad please see their everyday heroes site here

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 Thank you from Emily, me and our track coach – The Big Black Beastie!

 

 

 

Coping with SCI becomes manageable

Recently I was rear ended in my car! I was minding my own business, slowing behind a vehicle that was indicating to turn right when that screech of braking wheels makes your shoulders rise in anticipation of the thump, a glance in the rear view mirror confirmed a Masda was in my truck.

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Relaxation tips for Carers

Relaxation can be the last thing we think about during our busy day but crucially important for us all. Without a moment to remember ourselves within the daily routine we can loose perspective. Relaxation readjusts my psyche so that I am calmer and surprisingly more energised.

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Shared Rehab Facilities as Dog Recuperates From Surgery!

Dog

Beastie has been very quiet since Tuesday afternoon, we thought it was due to vigorous exercise and the warm weather? It took me until Wednesday to really look at the enormous black hairy yak, I looked deep into her warm chocolate eyes and they were sad. Emily reckoned the Beastie had been dumped by her dog boyfriend, I didn’t realise she was dating but what goes on in dog parks stays in dog parks!

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