I was impressed with the basics that Hannah knows - can't get Asta to even sit straight. We are working on basics and good etiquette when we are out and about. Anxiety, although harmful - how to handle it Asta knows as in the video. For my bipolar I need more specific commands for specific tasks.
Bipolar is a tough disability and I need Asta to do more than just anxiety related commands. Anxiety for bipolar folks is the intense manic state. For me, that is psychosis and usually manifests as hallucinations, both audio and visual, Obsessive-compulsive behaviors, talking all the time and not having any of it make sense to others outside my disorder. The other side is depression which manifests in keeping to myself, not wanting to get out of bed, suicidal thoughts and actions and for that state I have to train different behaviors. Asta must be grounded in knowing how to help me in both these states.
The 1st psychiatric related command he learned was "Help Me" and he goes to find my husband and lead him back to me. This is goes directly to both my manic and depressive states. I have learned that we have to train a little everyday -to reinforcing commands he has learned and introducing new commands. Really I am just winging it.
Sometimes the training sounds ridiculous - like duct taping turkey to a water bottle as a step in training him to bring me a bottle of water.
I will continue working with him on some of the examples in the video, but I have just let some things go (like the straight sit) so we can focus on the more important tasks I need him for.
I really didn't know I was training a service dog, until some members here told me that Asta was performing service dog work. I never expected this could be so when he was a puppy, although I have to say he was one of the most confident puppies I've ever seen. I didn't pick him, he picked me (with the breeder's help) Now I am so grateful that he is my dog. Poodles are the best, aren't they?
Here’s another psychiatric service dog (non-poodle) doing similar actions. I find he doesn’t put his heart into it. I don’t feel his love for working as I did with the poodle, who looked so happy to help her human !