The making of an American Service Dog.
I made a note to republish about a couple of weeks ago and then ‘stuff’ got in the way. (Like me falling from my bike; again!)
I saw this photograph and then with the smallest amount of research came across the story. I hope I can share it with you all.
First, a photograph of Jill Piper who is Lasting Image Photography
Next, a few words from her website that explain a little more about Jill.
I started working in a photo studio in 1985 (yikes!). I’ve worked in studios in Maine and California, and started Lasting Image in 1997. I have photographed literally thousands of people of all ages.
I was a Grand Imaging Award finalist in 2019 (crazy hard to do!) and a PPA Silver Medalist in 2020.
I regularly enter my work in Professional Photographers of America’s image competitions for judging and critique. It’s brutal. But it has made me a better photographer.
Here is Ziggy’s owner describing what it takes for Ziggy to become a service dog.
Thank you to my friend Anne Marie Shumate from Lasting Image Photography for doing such a great job photographing Ziggy and me.
Ziggy is a SDIT or otherwise known as a Service Dog in Training. He has passed two of the three major test and four of the ten outings. Once he completes his other test he’ll get his final certificate from Soldiers Best Friend, a non-profit 501c3. Jamie Barilla is my trainer. She works with the two of us for two days a week. Sometimes Ziggy catches on quicker than I do, so I think Jamie is training me!
Jamie Barilla works with Soldiers Best Friend, a non-profit 501c3. Besides working on Photography with my own non-profit 501c3, I spend a great deal of time training Ziggy. Not counting the 2 1/2 hours of training Ziggy receives a day, I also have to write a daily report of what we do everyday.
I now can understand the complexities involved in training a service dog. He already knows over 64 commands, with a lot more coming down the road. A lot of the commands Ziggy first learned, even though they were OK at the beginning, had to be tweaked to make them even better.
So if you see a service dog now you know it takes a lot of work. Some 50 to 70 percent of dogs that enter a service dog program don’t make the grade; either because the dog doesn’t have the proper temperament or the person involved doesn’t have the time or energy to put into the dog.
Well we hope that Ziggy gets the final certificate and I can see no reason why that doesn’t come about. And, finally, coming back to Jill to note that she is a great lover of dogs. Have a look at the page on her website that shows the awards that she has won. Please, take a peep and see the wonderful photos of dogs!