Saturday, March 3, 2012

Riding The Gautrain With #SAGApupVolt!

This afternoon, Volt and I went to Centurion from Midrand's Gautrain station and back again a few hours later!
I had asked @TheGautrain on Twitter during the week if Volt would be allowed to ride the train since he's still a puppy-in-training, and they said he was welcome (as are adult trained guide-dogs) but suggested I have a letter or something from SAGA to verify who Volt is just in case anyone wanted to ask questions (and of course he would be wearing his jacket like he has to when we're in public).
Had security at the station had any issues with allowing us into the station or onto the train we would simply have done the trip by car (we don't fight about this stuff) but the few guards who asked about him when we got there were more than happy to allow us on our way when we explained what he was.
And of course there were people on the platforms with us who also asked questions about him and he was such a good dog! He sat or lay next to me on the platform and behaved so very well!

I was so proud of him!
And Volt was a total pro with the whole trip! He had to ride in a lift a couple of times to get to the right platform, and he had a good look and sniff at the gap between the platform and the train door, but he boarded and disembarked without batting an eyelid and when we were on the train he lay down at my feet and stayed there!
lying at my feet on the floor of the Gautrain
Oh and we didn't go and find seats on the train as my sister C had her baby's pram with her, we stayed in the open space where the trains doors are and sat on the little fold out seats in the wall. Volt also didn't flinch when we were on the platform and the trains pulled into and out of the station! It was great!

that's us there on the right waiting for the train at the station 

AND he rode in different cars today as my sister C fetched us at our house in her car and my mom fetched us from the station in Centurion in another car- and Volt wasn't at all worried! He got in and out of both cars when told without hesitation, even though he had to sit in the front foot-well and not on the back seat like he does in our car.
We made the trip specially to celebrate my sister B's birthday, and from the station we went to Isabella's. Isabella's in Centurion said we were welcome to have Volt if we didn't mind sitting outside (we phoned to check with them in the week), and Volt was pretty good while we were there. He still gets so very excited if he sees children so once or twice he jumped up to greet someone, but mostly he lay still next to my chair like he's supposed to. Every now and then I gave him an ice block to chew on, and at one point it got a little warm so I took his training jacket off for a bit. And we went across the road to a grassy sidewalk for his busies which he did just like he was supposed to.
Then we headed back to the Gautrain and home where Volt got a very well deserved bowl full of puppy food!
Thank you to the Gautrain and Isabella's for allowing us to advance Volt's training with your help!

click on the puppy to make a donation to SAGA

Don't forget to check out the Twitter hash-tag #SAGApupVolt to see regular updates on my puppy raising adventure!