Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Discovery Park of America

Back in April (yes, we're working our way backwards) Moray came on a field trip to Discovery Park of America.  This is a pretty new museum that is about two hours from where we live and has pretty much anything you can imagine a museum can have.  It is a really cool place, and an awesome training outing for Moray!
Entrance to the park
During the latter half of March and all of April, Moray had a skin infection on his face that started as a result of an abrasion from his gentle leader.  This meant we were not allowed to use a head collar at all for over six weeks.  We got permission to use a martingale collar with him during this time, but if you have any experience with training collars, you know that a martingale doesn't offer nearly the control that a head collar does; which in turn means that the dog has to work harder and show a lot more self control than with a head collar.  It was kind of frustrating at times to have that option taken away, but it was a great time for Moray to really develop his self control all on his own.

Our field trip landed right in the middle of this, and with it being a popular spot for school tours, and lots of people and kids there that day, Moray was pushed to his limit and really stretched in his ability to stay focused on me.  But he proved himself well and did fantastic all day. The museum only opened last November, and one of the docents told me that Moray was the first service dog he has seen come through and that we set a very good example for all the rest.  Yay!  I don't think there's a higher compliment for a raiser and puppy in training than that. 
The first thing that Moray saw was a mini aquarium.  This was the first time he has seen fish tanks, and he was so interested, but still collected himself well.

In the bubble!
We took a few minutes to just sit and watch all the busyness going on.  In new places, its often most productive to let them take it all in before you ask them to participate and work throughout the crazy.  
There were TONS of school field trips there and lots of kids running around.  I'm not a fan of doing these types of things because kids often try to get all over Moray without permission, but I was pleasantly surprised by their behavior and we only had a handful of drive-by pettings that we had to deal with.  

One of the coolest things they have there is an earthquake simulator.  Moray got to go in with us and it was really good for him!  He was slightly startled at the movement at first but, did well, as I praised him throughout.
In the earthquake simulator with my mom
Moray also got to learn about glass elevators, stopping frequently to look at exhibits while weaving through lots of people, playing dress-up, waiting (with my mom!) for me at the bottom of a huge slide, and even aquatinted himself with several dinosaurs! 

Can anyone name the object in the picture?!

"Up" on a meteorite! 

Heat sensor, anyone?

There was also a huge section of the museum that was outside that we got to explore.  Moray was a little distracted by some geese and ducks he saw, but did very well, and was so exhausted by the time we headed home!

Uh oh...

A "challenge" started by our friend Monica!

1 comment:

  1. Looks like you all had a lot of fun! Moray is so adorable.
    ...and the object in the picture...looks like a slide rule? My dad still uses one :)


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