Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Baby-Sitters Club #118: Kristy Thomas, Dog Trainer

This book was really easy to read because nothing really happens!

It's a normal day in the Brewer-Thomas household, and Kristy lets us know that Watson has a bunch of magazines spread out because he's planning their new garden. He tells her that some of the stuff on the table is about guide dogs because he's considering signing the family up as a puppy trainer. A puppy trainer is someone who takes care of a guide dog when it's a puppy and turns it over later. He warns her that they have to pass some tests first, but naturally, they get a dog.

They pick Scout up and get a bunch of information about taking care of her. She has to go to obedience school for awhile, and Kristy, Watson, and Karen all go to the first one with her. Everyone thinks Scout is oh so cute except for one woman at the grocery store. She pitches a fit about how they shouldn't allow dogs in the store, but the manager sides with them because it's a service animal, so the woman storms off.

The whole family starts taking her places so she can learn how to act. Kristy even takes Scout to Krushers practice, but she flips the fuck out because Karen gives Scout and Shannon shoes to chew on. She goes off on her about how dogs shouldn't play with shoes, and Abby has to step in and kind of diffuse the situation.

There's a whole backstory about Deb Copper. I haven't read a lot of the later books so I don't know if she appears in any others. Deb recently went blind, which is how Watson learned about the guide dog foundation. Deb is really sad, but she acts out so that people won't want to be around her. Mary Anne and Kristy both have problems with her before Kristy decides to try something.

She arranges for the other sitters to bring their charges over because she thinks maybe Deb will be okay with new people. Deb gets really pissy with them, and they all leave. When she's over there again, Deb wants to rent movies, but Kristy decides to play with the boys first. Deb leaves on her own and almost gets hit by a car, but Kristy saves her.

The foundation decides to host a Puppy Walker Day where everyone dresses up their dogs. Kristy invites Deb's family, and she finally starts loosening up. She doesn't smile in the pictures, but she does participate a little so it's a win. And Kristy lets us know that Scout is so smart that she won't have a problem making it through the program.

*Claudia brings over the Hobart boys who she sits for and Ben is one of them. Really, Ben? The eleven year old who is old enough to date but apparently can't cross the street without a sitter?

*I love that Kristy lives so far away that she needs to take the bus or get a ride, but when she sits for Deb who lives in the same neighborhood, everyone manages to get there no problem.

*They make a big point out of how Scout can't play with other dogs because then she'll always want to play with dogs, but then Kristy lets her play with Shannon.

*Kristy really should have known that bringing over a bunch of random people was a bad idea, and I'm surprised she didn't ask for permission first.

*Abby spends a surprisingly large amount of time around Scout given that she's so allergic. They mention it, but it's apparently okay because she sits near a window.

*Deb's brother Mark tries to play kickball with his eyes shut to figure out what life's like for her, which freaks out his little brother because he's worried they'll both go blind.

*So it's okay to bring home another pet, but only if you get rid of it later? That's kind of what Watson says here since he wouldn't let Kristy bring home Sonny.

*They conveniently run into a blind man who tells them all about how much a guide dog changed his life. He also somehow knows exactly what breed Scout is after petting her head.

*It seems strange that the foundation would let them send Scout to a normal obedience school when they offer their own classes. Kristy says it's because they live so far away from the foundation, but it seems like they would find people close enough to attend those classes.

*I'm also pretty sure that the foundation wouldn't be cool with a 13 year old girl training one of their dogs instead of an adult.

*Scout always has to wear a yellow jacket that identifies her as a guide dog in training. See what's missing on the cover?

*Ann compares training a guide dog to training her cat to stop clawing things. Yup, totally the same thing.