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Reality Check

Sunday, November 23, 2014

So yesterday we went to see my in-laws and my husband breaks the news about me getting a service dog to them. They seem to agree, nod their heads like it is a good idea. So now my husband is on board. That was all it took. Kinda frustrating, but I'm so glad they are being supportive so that now he is 100% supportive too.

I keep finding hidden costs in this service dog thing! Now they are saying they board train the dog for the first month and it costs $2,400 paid up front! I'm going to check and see if that is a must do. I have doubts in my training ability, but I can't scrap up that kind of money any time soon, I have too many other things that come first.

I've asked DH about fund raising, seeing if we can get it circulating through the church, back to my family in NM and all of our friends on FB. Even if we only get a few hundred dollars, that is closer to our goal than we were before! I'm going to start saving a certain amount of my disability check just to go towards it, how much I don't know yet. I told hubby I'd stop doing all of the extra therapeutic things I've been doing and he put his foot down on that. Said that all of those little things I've been doing have been helping so much that he's afraid I'll get even worse without them. And I'll be honest, I'm not doing good. Hence my reason for wanting the service dog sooner.

So I'm going to start training to have the service dog. Whatever kind of dog we get it will be a high energy dog and will need exercise. So walking every day starting Monday. Walking at the park when possible and here in the neighborhood when not. I need to get a rain jacket and some galoshes for when it is raining (and a rain jacket for the dog) because the dog will need exercise even when it rains, and around here it can rain for days on end! Our little dog, the male (Pickles), needs training badly, so he is going to be my guinea pig. I'll train him some morning and again at night. He knows up (to jump up and get his food) and sit. Lay totally confuses him and so does shake. We'll work on it with diligence though!

I've explained to Mark, the training guy that I'm on a disability income and I don't have $2,400 dollars just laying around. In fact I owe that much to my BFF from when my husband lost his job. So I'll be setting up a payment plan with her too. Here lately it seems like it has been one emergency after another, from my car being repossessed to having to get new tires to now the washing machine is broken. Can't get ahead!

DH brings up all the holiday's and birthday's coming up, but between you and me I'm willing to skimp on those in order to get my dog. My husband just does not understand what it is like to live with this constant anxiety and not be able to go places, not function properly. I checked at Classical Conversations and they said it is totally cool with them when I get the dog to start bringing it. Now I need to check with my pastor, just as a courtesy to make sure the church is okay with me showing up with a dog. If not I'm going to find another church. I love my church, but I can't even make it all the way through a service any more, my anxiety gets the better of me and I always leave early. I usually go sit in the car till church is over so that I'm not taking the girls out early.

That said I know that the dog is not a miracle worker. But it's like, when my DH is with me I can go places and do more things. I know that when I have the dog I'll have to get out more, go more places for the dog's sake, and that will really help me to get out of this shell I am in. I know it will be a hindrance in some cases. My dear friend's son is very afraid of dogs and I always put our dogs up when he comes over, but in the case of my service dog, she will not be put up, she will stay right beside me. I know it will bring attention, but the attention will be focused on the dog. I also feel like it is an outward sign of a hidden illness. Most people don't know I have an illness.

I'm just really bummed about the hidden costs that keep popping up. At first I'm thinking it's $100 for the evaluation and then $70 for each time the trainer comes to the home and then.... more keeps being inserted! The first information that I got sent said it could cost anywhere from 2-7 grand, but this sounds like I'm going to pay 2 grand before I even get to bring my dog home! PTSD/Anxiety dogs don't need as much training as say a seizure dog, so they are the least expensive kind you can get. But it seems like they are trying to suck as much money as they can out of me!
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