The Guide Dog Piper who was named and sponsored by SandpiperCI is now well on his way to become a fully fledged Guide Dog. He is in his final stages at the National Training School in the UK and waiting for a placement owner who he will be suited to.
His first year of training was undertaken in Jersey and in the latter part of 2014 he continued his training in the UK.
SandpiperCI are delighted to have played a part in being able to assist Guide Dogs in changing the future of a blind or partially sighted person who Piper will provide vital service too.
We would also like to thank everyone including our valued customers who continue to place their spare change in the Guide Dog boxes situated at our till areas in the majority of our stores in Jersey.
SandpiperCI will continue to give you updates on Piper and in the collections of monies for such a wonderful cause.
PIPER’S PROGRESS – 6 MONTH PUPDATE
Piper was 6 months old on the 16th March. He now weighs 24Kg and is becoming a big dog. Piper had bit of rough and tumble after thinking he was the Wayne Rooney of the canine world when he couldn't resist having a play with a young lad and his football! That's what pups do after all. Otherwise he is in tip top condition.
Piper has just gone down to 2 meals a day so he is still getting used to having to miss the lunch time meal. Come midday he gives rather sad look because of this. He adapted well to wearing his bib and gets out and about in it quite regularly now. He now sleeps out of his crate at night. This coincides with the lighter mornings so he’s a bit too eager to wake up start the day at the moment!
His last 'formal' duty was the street collection for Jenny. He was on his best behaviour and drew in the crowds. Piper also met St Saviour Girl Guides and to show them what GD puppy walking is all about.
Piper will be going on his first holiday on the 31st of May by boat to Dartmoor. He will experience the boat journey, a longer car journey than he is currently used to and we on a train. It will be interesting to see how he behaves. Now he is older his muscles are developing and he manages longer walks so hopefully he will enjoy the walks on the moors as well.
Piper’s Progress – 4 month pupdate
Piper is 4 months old on 16th January 2014. He now weighs 14.7kg and has grown into a very gentle, placid pup (and still as gorgeous). His trainers report that he is quick to learn commands and is 99% toilet trained already!
He’s learning all about his surrounding – he’s a little reluctant on walks but is beginning to love running on the beach, playing at Noirmont and walking along the railway walk. He’s quickly learning recall when he’s allowed to run free.
He’s a little clingy at the moment but this is getting better every day.
Piper loves the company of children and playing with his toys. He is becoming relaxed in crowds, busy shops and restaurants.
Piper is reaching a stage in his training where we all need to be aware that Piper must be treated like a qualified guide dog and not to be too distracted. He needs to be able to focus on his commands and not get too excited when he’s out in public.
What Piper will learn next:
- door procedures
- step procedures
- wearing his guide dog coat
Pipers Progress - 12 week Pupdate
Piper has settled in very well with his Puppy Walker Jacqui, but is still appearing to be a little bit needy. His crate training is taking a bit longer than expected, and he still doesn't like sleeping through the night, but his toilet training is much better than expected for his age. He's a very responsive puppy, intelligent, and has already taken very well to his commands; he 'sits' well, and is managing to 'wait' for the whistle that tells him it's time to eat.
For such a young pup, Piper has already been getting out and about around Jersey, and has become a bit of a local celebrity. He's been on lots of trips into town, and has enjoyed his walks about department stores and the other shops on the high street. Despite wanting to stick his nose into everything, Piper's beautifully behaved in shops, and has even managed an entire full weeks shop while walking next to the shopping trolley; it didn't seem to faze him at all. Thanks to his excellent toilet training skills, Jacqui has absolutely no worries when taking him anywhere.
Piper has also had a lot of local exposure in Jersey, and along with his neighbouring guide dog puppy in training, Nikki, has been photographed for his very own article in the Jersey Evening Post. Piper and Jaqui were also interviewed on local radio, and for a television spot. Piper didn't seem to notice all the fuss though, and was far more focussed on playing with Nikki.
He did, however, take a liking to the lead for the radio interviewer's earphones which livened up the interview a little bit!
Piper has also been to some local garden centres where he's very inquisitive and likes to get his nose into all the pots and plants, but he is exceedingly well behaved. He sits quietly under the table in cafes and he always does what he's told and is very focussed on thematter at hand. He's a very cuddly Puppy, and is always happy to have a bit of a fuss.
Pipers Progress - Report One
26th November 2013 Pipers Training Program
So, how will I make a good guide dog?
It doesn’t happen overnight, and it takes patience, time and money. Did you know, for instance, that it will take me 20 months of training to become a fully recognized guide dog for the blind? It takes seven years of support and costs around £50,000? I am going to be working hard on my trainings and I am also going to work hard raising as much money as I can in the Channel Island Sandpiper Stores for more of my friends to be trained like me to help the blind or partially sighted people in the Islands.
I will be introduced to obstacles gradually, and be taught to navigate my way round. It can take a while to master, but when the I get it right the trainer gives me lots of encouragement and maybe even a little treat!
I can't check the traffic lights!
It’s a popular misconception that I will know when to cross the road by waiting for the green light. In reality, it’s a team effort and not an easy task. On a standard kerb-to-kerb crossing known to the owner, I will be trained to stop at the edge, to indicate it has reached a crossing. My owner will listen for traffic, then, when he or she decides it’s safe, will give the command forward! However, my training teaches me NOT to obey the command if cars coming.
0 to 6 weeks
I was a happy bundle of fluff puppy is living with my mum and siblings in a Guide Dogs volunteer’s home. As well as playing, exploring and napping, I then went to our state of the art breeding centre when I was just six weeks for my health checks and immunizations.
6 weeks to 4 months
On a lovely warm sunny day in October 2013 I flew into Jersey airport with my friend Nicky a black Labrador who is going to live with a trainer to be trained just like me. I got off the plane and I had my photo taken with Jacqui who works for Guide Dogs and will be looking after me in Jersey over the next year. The other lady holding Nicky is Margery who is a puppy walker Nicky will be living with her. During these crucial months, I will start learning good manners and basic commands, such as sit and down as well as how to walk on the lead.
I think I am going to like living in Jersey and growing into a fine Guide Dog.
I will update you as I progress.
Welcome to Piper
Please join Sandpiper in welcoming “Piper” into the world and onto the Guide Dogs Training Scheme.
He was born and named by SandpiperCI on 16th September 2013. He has now been placed with his puppy walker where he will begin his early training.
This is a very exciting journey for Piper and one that we are delighted to be following with “Piper’s Progress” on the Sandpiper website. The site will include all his new adventures. At this stage Piper is an uncoordinated bundle of fluff however over the next few weeks and months we look forward to sharing the beginning of his transformation into a responsible Guide Dog for the blind.