Saturday, 27 December 2008

Caught red paw'd

Gus has been caught in the act of digging by his granddad who is not to impressed!

Our back garden doubles up as our driveway, we are on a corner plot so my dad drives the car in at an angle to park it on the drive, the rest of the garden is grass. (apart from the spending area)

So our car is a little bit too long to go through the gate at the right angle to end up on the drive, so the front left wheel always goes though the grass, well its winter so the grass is a bit dead and gone on that particular spot.

My dad went to let the dogs in just before christmas and found Gus digging! So now there is a little hole in the ground, at least it explains where the mud has been coming from!

Today we did something new, Ian and Gus where left alone in the house while we went shopping, Gus does not get left really at halls, I'm always in the building if he is alone in my room, I don't think its safe to leave him alone in my room if I go out. Basically he goes everywhere I go. So leaving him is a bit of a new thing, and we came back and nothing had been destroyed, both dogs where still in one piece and the sofa  had not been sat on; success!

Gus was incredibly pleased to see me, I got a massive bounding jumping hug all over my white coat, followed by a gentle chew on my hand and lots of circling me!

I really love him, he is so perfect and so full of cheekiness and character!

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Merry Cristmas Everyone!

To all my doggy friends I hope you get lots of bones, treats and cuddles from your owners and that you enjoy the christmas dinner.

My favourite part of christmas dinner is the sprouts, I like them best raw and cold because they are really good for me and healthy.

I haven't been speaking to mummy recently, on Tuesday she took me to the VET! Can you believe it really, she took me to the VET and there was nothing wrong with me, and worst still the VET emptied my glands, it was horrible and 3 people had to hold me still.

So understandably mummy was not my favourite person, she claimed that I was due my 6 monthly MOT but I still think taking me to the VET was uncalled for.

I was just starting to forgive her on Wednesday  but then she did something terrible, she went out for hours without me!

I was with nanny and granddad but I still got upset and cried!

So I wouldn't speak to her last night, she came and gave me a goodnight kiss and a cuddle which was lovely, I love mummy cuddles.

Then this morning I completely forgave her, because I got lots of presents and treats and lovely things for christmas.

you see I do have christmas spirit I forgave mummy even thought she was nasty!

This is my first christmas with mummy and it was great, everyone got loads of presents which I tried to steal and yes its been great, I have decided that I really love christmas.

Sunday, 30 November 2008


Oh dear my poor boy now has an ear infection!

I'm also informed that there is a nasty highly infectious strain of kennel cough spreading around the south of England one of the tutors at uni has had a poorly doggie with it.

So we shall be staying well away from her as it spreads in the air and can attach itself to peoples clothes and everything!

Monday, 24 November 2008

Just a quick celebration

As of Friday we are not having another aftercare visit from guide dogs for 6 months!

There will still be contact between us in the form of assessment sheet things I have to fill in and send off but its great to be free!

an interesting comment

Outside ASDA in Southampton last night Gus and  I received a lovely comment from a member of the public. 'what a lovely black Dalmatian you have there'  I tried very hard not to laugh!

Come to think of it Gus does have a friend who is a Dalmatian called Todd...

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Recent pictures

a pretty picture of gus i took with a digital SLR camera from uni

Pictured above is the aftermath of Ian and Gus having a playsesssion, they both love cuddley toys but both want the toy that the other one has so it oftern ends in carnage, the latest victem was Gus' cheese burger

Gus and I stood outside in the rain when we went to parliament to demonstrate!

Gus all wrapped up, it sad really this picture was taken after he had been sedated and was all shivery but he looked cute all bundled up.

Gus looking out of the window of the bus on the way to see nanny and granddad.

Settling in

First off apologies for the lack of posting as I am sure our readers will understand Gus and I have been rather busy with settling in to the routine of university life.

I think we have now settled into a nice little routine although it was a very bumpy start for Gus.

After cutting his paw and having a bit of time off he continued to limp so ended up back at the vet. Adding more to my concern on the way there Gus fell going up a flight of stairs, which made me worry more!

The vet was lovely but did little to put my mind at ease reeling off a whole selection of things it could be. It took about 45 minutes of examination to work out that it was his elbow causing the problem (he was not giving much away!).

Elbow problems are renowned for being tricky to locate the source of the issue so it could have been a host of things.

A common problem in Labrador retriever dogs is elbow displaycia, if it was that it would be very serious and may lead to Gus taking early retirement.

In the end he was given a weeks worth of anti-inflammatory painkillers and had to have complete rest. He was allowed one short walk a day for a week and that was it. Then in the second week he was to gradually build up to working again. The hope was that it was a sprain and that rest and painkillers would sort it out, if not he would have to see a specialist and have X-rays.

Unfortunately for me having just started at university that meant that Gus had to go and stay with my parents for a week.

Gus had a ball with them and mums dog Ian and enjoyed his little walks to different places, he loves my parents to bits so for him it was a lovely little holiday!

For me it was a nightmare, I missed him so much and really struggled to get around university and do the basics like food shopping. I was also a complete blubbering wreck for most of the week, on one occasion I saw a black Labrador puppy and cried in the middle of the high street!

Fortunately when we where reunited and Gus started to get back to work all my worries subsided as he is now absolutely fine. We will never really no what it was but it was probably just a sprain.

Panic over!

Gus and I seem to be bonding more and more as time goes on and we are attempting to get into a bit of a routine.

Recently Gus has decided he likes cuddles but only on his terms!

Thursday morning my alarm clock went off I sat up and Gus had already got off his bed and was wagging his tail with that good morning look on his face. He then put one poor on me then the other and then his belly-landed!

He is not allowed on my bed, but as long as he keeps his back paws on the floor cuddles are fine and we certainly had a lovely one on Thursday!

I’m also discovering that Gus is not a morning person the majority of the time bless him, he does not like getting up in the morning and off his bed, but sometimes surprises me.

Due to the painkillers he was on he now has 2 feeds a day, morning around 8 am and evening around 6 (but unfortunately lecture dependant) he likes having more feeds, even though he has the same amount.

Overall I think Gus is very happy here, he still loves to go home and see my mum, dad and Ian but he likes lots of things about Southampton to.

Unfortunately one of the things that Gus loves about Southampton is the rats, there are a huge amount of rats in the city and the come out everywhere at night. A few weeks ago on my way to the station that is about 15 minutes away from my halls Gus saw 5 rats!

I cant see the rats but Gus most defiantly can, in fact I think he wants to chase them all, my mates have been joking about buying a radio controlled rat for him for Christmas.

Also another thing he loves to do now is look out of the window on the buses trains or whatever he is on which is cute.

Gus is also absolutely obsessed with my friend Tom, he wants to follow Tom everywhere, we think it might be because Tom wears a lot of black so Gus identifies with him but its rather sweet, he can find tom in a crowd of people and likes standing on Tom!

Friday, 19 September 2008

Paw GUS!!!

My paw (you will get the pun in a minute) little guide dog Gus has been in the wars today.

We had a visit from guide dogs yesterday and I mentioned a little problem he has with his elbow, he has a big callous on it thats bald and very red. So yesterday I spoke to our trainer who said to keep a good eye on it because it had been bleeding.

Well today when I was grooming Gus I noticed that there was green gunk coming out of it. So I booked into see a vet at 2:45.

So Off I went to my lectures and what happens on the way Gus cuts his paw. It's the tiniest cut ever but it bled FOREVER! I got a sightling to look at it for me and check there was nothing they could see in it, which there was not. Gus seemed to be in a lot of pain and limping quite badly.

Still thinking that my boy was being a massive wuss I asked the vet too look at it for me. The vet was concerned about the amount of pain he was in so we agreed to sedate him so she could clean out the wound and check it had nothing in it, without hurting him. 2 hours of me sitting in the waiting room later she came out to tell me that she had removed a shard of glass from inside his foot.

While he was sleepy she also cleaned up his elbow and put cream on it and gave him a strong painkiller and a big boost of antibiotic to get him started.


He needed antibiotics for the elbow anyway but he had to have a stronger dose because he spent a day walking around with glass in his foot.

I think everyone in my Halls has heard about it now and one of the guys went out and brought Gus a toy People are being really helpful and offering to take me shopping/go and buy food and stuff for me while Gus is out of action and one Guy has even said anytime Gus needs the vet to give him a ring and he will give us a lift.

I dont think the reversal of the sedative went very well Gus is still out of it 5 hours later, I had to carry him from the vet into a taxi and then from the taxi to my room where I put him down thinking he could make it to his bed. He tripped over his bed and fell flat on his face and couldn't get up poor thing and he is all cold and shivery so I have wrapped him up.

Sorry to write such a long post but it has been a VERY emotional day, my baby being in pain is a horrible thought, it's not like i can explain to him why he is all wobbly and it makes him sad that he does not understand that makes me sad for him!

(someone is getting some serious spoiling today)

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Gus' first visit to uni

Yesterday Gus visited uni for the first time, and he really loved doing the route there as it involves going through a park!

We got there and did a little tour of the building and saw his spending run which is currently in construction, wow its the lap of luxury! Its quite big and has an area of concreate and then is going to have an area of gravel. It was seriously the nicest spending pen I have ever seen, its discreatly set into a area of bushes and dosent look like anything gross! The best feture wich i am loving the idea of is that it has a roof! Thats it when its pouring with rain I can stand under the shelter in the dry!

I really think Gus is going to enjoy moving to uni, I think we may become the most well known people around uni.

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Puppy pictures

Gus' puppy walkers very kindly sent me some of his puppy pictures they are adorable!

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Maybe the sea isn't so scary

Hello to all my adoring fans out there including of course Dave and Maureen, who where my puppy walkers and like to keep an eye on all the mischief I get up to.

Today me and mummy went to town we went in a shop I hadn't been in before so I was excited but it turned out to be a little anticlimax as it didn't sell anything particularly interesting to me. it was called Iceland and mummy brought a few little bits of something.

Then we when to Costa coffee we seem to be spending a lot of time in there, I think mummy likes it.

Then this afternoon we went to the beach again, I decided last week that swimming in that water with those big white moving things that mum says are called waves was so not for me. They look like they could eat a little dog like me up for dinner!

The thing is they don't bother Ian at all he seemed to like jumping over them and well quite frankly I thought if he lived then I probably will!

So for the first time since I have been with mummy I went in the sea and played with Ian. It was actully really fun and i really enjoyed myself, mum says I need to learn to swim a little slower so she can take a better picture!

I also need to learn to close my mouth when I am swimming that water tasted gross!

Here's the pictures mummy did manage to take!

Friday, 18 July 2008

The promised pictures

OK if this works there should be some pictures of me and Gus when he met the Guides for the first time.

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

It's my first post

Wow Have finally managed to remove mummy from the computer and she is letting me write my first post!

Yesterday was very exciting, I met all 40 ish of the Guides that mummy helps out with they were really nice and compleatly ignored me at first even though I am so buetiful!

Then I got to watch them have a BBQ which looks like great fun mummy is still today trying to get the smell of smoke out of my hair.

While everyone's food was cooking which smelt amazing they had a little ceremony and i was enrolled into the unit (pictures to follow) they made me a really nice neckerchief that has the guides logo on it and says 6th alverstoke guides and then has my name on it.

Mummy had a small lump in her throat because I looked so cute!

Then I was a really good boy and had my photo taken with all the guides in a big group photo.

At the end of the evening mummy let all the guides that wanted to come up and stroke me in little groups it was great!

I definatly want to go there again mum!

Thursday, 10 July 2008


Woo today about one hour ago Gus and I qualified!

It’s soooo good we are now allowed out on our own without supervision, there is still lots of work to be done but its great I’m so pleased!

Obviously It’s still early days but I’m so chuffed, I’m really proud of Gus today we went to town and he found the bus stop for the first time and found the doors of Costa coffee, Timpson’s, Halifax bank and a card shop! He worked like an angel and was such a good boy it was sunny and he guided me round loads of people and street furniture and it was great!

Saturday, 5 July 2008

Back home

Well I am very pleased to announce that I and Gus are back home not just on day release but to stay!

Are second week of training went really well and without incident. We had traffic training on Monday and Tuesday and both lived to tell the tale, I absolutely hated it there is something very unnatural about standing in the middle of the road knowing a car is about to drive towards you! That said Gus was an absolute star and was really good.

He has his occasional wafting moments but overall he has been utterly fabulous!

He has found pedestrian crossing buttons, doors, cash machines, trains stairs and seats! All of which is incredibly cute to watch as he puts his nose on a button or seat to indicate where it is! He has guided me round countless obstacles including off curbs, trees, street furniture and of course other people.

At this stage I really can't express how much he has changed my mobility and confidence, I really trust him and I think that trust is mutual. Working with Gus is so completely different to working with a long cane, it is defiantly a change for the better, we have not finished are training yet but it is so good to be able to relax trusting him to guide me round stuff without having to try and look out for it.

The three blind mice are planning to stay in touch and I think it is safe to say I have made some great friends during the training process and I really hope that everything works out well for the other two blind mice and there dogs. Hopefully once we are all qualified we can hold a reunion or something.

Sunday, 29 June 2008

week one is over!

Week one is all over and done with and I have come home for a few hours today which is lovely, I have been really missing home especially as we are not always busy and do have quite a bit of free time in the evenings.

If I'm honest I think I'm going a bit stir crazy sitting around in the room so its lovely to be out on parole!

Training has been going really well and the bond between me and Gus is continuing to grow, he had great fun on a free running session this morning.

Week 2 as it were starts tomorrow morning with traffic work! and a few other bits and bobs, so far we, me and Gus have passed all are objectives this week so we are looking forward to some busier roots and a trip to shakeaway!

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

First steps

Wow the last few days have been a whilwind!

Gus was delivered on friday and spent the weekend settling in at home.

Thenn on monday we came to the hotel for our training and did lectures orintation and obiedence.

Today the day was split in to the morning had a more structured obeidence session and we worked on lead work on stairs and stuff, which gus did really well at.

Then this afternoon Gus was fitted with his white working harness and we did our first harness walk, it was absoulty amazing!

I was worried because of my balance problems and genral lack of co ordination that i would screw it up but it went really well aand i am so prowed of Gus he really is a little angel in harness bless him.

The bon between us has really developed well and he is allredy loved and one of the family.

P.S apologiesa for the lack of proof reading in this post having a few issues this evening but still wanted to post.

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Getting more exciting!

Wow! I have yet again had a slightly manic week, its just how things go at the moment a lot is happening to plan for Gus' arrival and I have been really busy with exams.

Gus' bed arrived and it is really nice, quite a lot bigger than I realised but I'm working on places to put it! For the first few weeks he will come with his Guide Dog bed that he knows so he doesn't freak out about everything being new.

I also found out that he is arriving this Friday! Its so exciting there is less than a week to go and then my baby boy comes to stay!

Also because he will have to go to the loo on concrete at uni and in the hotel they have arranged to build a temporary dog run in my back garden for him to use, my mum is also hoping Ian will use it but I personally don't hold up much hope of that one.

It's really good I'm getting him for the weekend before all the hard work really begins on Monday, but ideally I need to have all my packing done before he arrives so I have lots of time to spend bonding with him.

Talking of packing I'm going to be away for 2 weeks and I'm really not sure I have enough cloths! seriously I'm doing the sums in my head and I don't see it happening.

Lets look at this from my perspective OK I'm away 14 days, I'm the clumsiest person in the world ever, walking around outside in all weathers. I am easily going to need a T-shirt a day plus some some, that's say at least 20. Add to that jumpers, trousers shorts, plus my I pod speakers, All the dog stuff, at leas 3 lots of shoes, including waking boots and a borrowed laptop not of course forgetting PJ's and underwear!

So I have a lot to do still not to mention my last exam to get out of the way, and I am determined to get some baking done before I go away!

Saturday, 7 June 2008

Time has stopped

Wow it really seems like since I last posted on here time has stopped!

I found out yesterday that I will be training residentially with Gus on the 23rd of June, in a very posh hotel!

I'm so pleased I am going away to train it will give me and Gus some time to bond and because it will be in Southampton we can both learn routes that we will actully start travelling on in September.

The residential part of training lasts for 2 weeks, I will have no computer or internet connection which is a scary thought, as you may have gathered from DOAM I am an internet addict! Also because its my first dog and the early stages of us training together are so sensitive I might not be allowed visitors.

After that we will come back to the house here to do between one and two weeks of further training, during which we should qualify and become a partnership.

So there's just over 2 weeks to go until I disappear and it seems like time is standing still, I'm so excited about everything.

I have brought him a really beautiful bed that has a desert camo pattern on it and he will look really sweet on it!

Thursday, 15 May 2008

Well hello there!

Hi and welcome to Guiding Gus!

I'm Jemma the soon to be owner of a beautiful guide dog called Gus, we where successfully matched on Tuesday and at the present time will be training on the 23rd of June. Gus is a black Labrador retriever cross and is going to be 2 years old on the 17th of may, he is really sweet and I can't wait for him to become part of the family.

Gus will be accompanying me when I move to university in September and in all the other activity's I engage in such as being a Guide leader, camping and all kinds of sports. for now though the most important thing is to get training all done and passed so we qualify nicely!

We will hopefully both be contributing to this blog at various points, I already have a blog here so it shall be a challenge looking at them both.

For now I will leave you with my one and only picture of me and Gus.