Adaptation is a central theme to “The Story” Trishna’s service dog Pollyanna (background, right) grew up with acres of farmland to explore. When Trishna (foreground, left) leaves for college with John (foreground, right), her family have to figure out what’s best for the now-senior Pollyanna. Does Pollyanna retire from service duties, stay on the farm, and visit on weekends? Does she stay in their dorm apartment during the day? Do they invite her to class?
Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (worldbuilding brainstorming)
Adapting reality is a central goal of mine for “The Story.”
If I were to write something fancifully emotional about how Trishna would train a second service dog to bring around college, just because she wouldn’t want Pollyanna to feel lonely in an apartment, would that be realistic? People can have two service dogs simultaneously, only if there is a legitimate service-related purpose for each dog, otherwise it is usually considered a crime. That unfortunately means Pollyanna couldn’t attend college courses, if Trishna were to train a replacement service dog, since Pollyanna would just revert to being a regular dog.
What would Trishna do?
Trishna’s parents specially trained Pollyanna to be a service dog for Trishna to provide her as many options as possible. Pollyanna acts as a mobility aid to fetch things and to bring assistance if she falls. Trishna ends up not needing a full-time service dog because she is a fairly stubbornly child and therefore pushes to be as independent as she can. Pollyanna therefore relaxes at home when Trishna goes to school, and just makes sure that nothing happens to her when she is at home. I will need to do more research on this part to make sure this is accurate.
With this in mind, Trishna probably wouldn’t need another service dog.
Trishna is not severely disabled. I’m still researching the finer details to determine whether the handicap is strictly a physical impairment as the leg of the minifig implies, an invisible disorder that quickly fatigues her, or a little of both. While she does have enough of a valid reason for utilizing a service dog growing up, she doesn’t need one to go about her day. When John moves in and they develop their relationship, he takes over that role. I’ve considered how they may hire a part-time caregiver for themselves, which will also require more research.
That brainstorming helped me with this conclusion:
Pollyanna wouldn’t attend classes to become educated in human subjects. (She’d get bored…) The question becomes whether college/apartment management would provide an exception for Pollyanna to live in one of their accessibility quarters knowing the details. If so, they’d bring Pollyanna on fun trips to local parks in the mornings, evenings, or weekends for fun adventures to socialize with other dogs and dog owners. If not, Trishna and John would return weekly to visit Pollyanna on the family farm and then maybe go out for adventures from there.
Either way, Pollyanna should get in some fun doggie socializing adventures.
|Sources: Casual research into fake service dogs, leading mostly to anecdotal discussions on forums.
Inspirations: Visiting a dog park and “How To Forgive.”