Endal, Life story of a Labrador, trained dog for assistance, amazing pet deeds photographed, part 3

The story of Endal the labrador continues here. A great example for how a pet animal can influence a human life. A great dog that pulled out Allen's life from darkness to the sunshine. The character of Labradors to keep pleasing its owner is well shown by Endal and the CPI training he got to be a service dog sharpened his skills to assist and help. Dogs like these gets excited when we rewards them and tries to do more to please. Endal was not just a dog but a lovely comrade and the best man i know as in the words of Allen. Story of Endal written by Allen and Sandra turned out to be an international best seller.

Endal, the Lab with a Job. A Dog trained to assist..
Three months after Allen had taken Endal home, it became apparent that Endal was doing the work of a fully trained assistance dog, teaching himself to do the important tasks that enabled Allen to function and regain his independence. So it was proposed that Endal and Allen went on one week of  an intensive two-week residential training course. This would allow Endal to qualify as a fully fledged Canine Partner and wear the cherished jacket, “his badge of office”. During that time, Nina noticed a dramatic change in Endal’s behaviour. ‘ Instead of doing jobs half-heartedly, he’d leap to it! Keys, he’d say, you want me to get keys? Great. Hang on and I’ll run and get them. Before, when someone else was asking him to do it, he’d amble over to the keys and back again without any great incentive. In return, he seemed to understand how much Allen had been through. He’s an interesting combination of pushiness and sensitivity.’

What about Signs to Words?
Endal's most amazing skill was his ability to use his initiative and read situations quickly. This was exactly what Allen needed to help him cope with his severe injuries. Would Endal be able to help? They would soon find out when he joined the Parton household full-time in autumn I997. Still unable to speak properly, Allen also suffered from word blindness when he simply couldn’t find the words to give Endal a command. ‘ One morning, I realised I’d left my razor upstairs. I could see a picture of the razor in my head but couldn’t think of the word. So I just patted my cheeks in an attempt to understand. To my amazement, he ran up the stairs and came down with it in its leather case. ‘

Over the ensuing months, Allen and Endal began to create their own sign language. A pat on the head means that Allen wants his cap. Instantly, Endal darts round to the back of the wheelchair where the cap is inside Allen’s bag. Hands held up mean gloves are required and Endal finds them and brings them round the front to Allen.

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Hmm chopped Tomatoes, isn't this your favourite one Allen, yea i know it is!

Endal was soon as adept at shopping as he was around the house. Allen simply issued the appropriate instructions from his wheelchair – cereal, soup, tins of tomatoes, bread – and Endal would unfailingly nose it from the shelf and drop it into the shopping basket. He even helped to pay.

Allen and Endal began to photographed by local newspapers, and then, as they grew in confidence, they were nominated for an award in a National competition run by Dogs Today magazine. During one photographic session, Endal and Allen went shopping at the local supermarket to show how Endal could differentiate between ‘tins’ and ‘bottles’ and nose out whatever Allen asks for on the shelves, such as a loaf of bread.

Endal the Cash point Dog!
As they were leaving, Allen realised he needed money from the cash machine outside.With the sunlight  shining on the glass screen , making it difficult for Allen to see, and with the money and receipt slot set far up the back of the machine, Allen was struggling. Suddnely,  without being asked, Endal jumped up to retrieve the card and money when Allen had made his transaction.

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Hey Allen, are we going a little Extravagant!, you making me draw money again and again, seems you expecting to win the lot i took for you huh..Endal making a transaction using Allen's ATM. Endal is the first dog to operate a Chip and pin Atm doing all functions.

Newspaper photographers asked him to do it again and again so they could get their pictures.  This was the photograph that was used when Endal was voted Dog of the Millennium in the Dogs Today competition.  The result was Endal, splashed over nearly every front page. The press went wild and reporters from around the world wanted to know about this extraordinary dog.  He was filmed by crews almost daily.  People started to recognise the yellow Labrador as “Endal the Cashpoint Dog”.

It was Endal’s uncanny ability to go the extra mile that first launched the pair into the public eye.  One day Allen was tapping his pin number into the ATM machine and struggling to retrieve the cash.  Endal decided to intervene and jumped up to reach for the card, money and receipt with his mouth. “It was amazing, as he had never been taught to do this,” marvels Allen. “There happened to be a journalist there and he wrote about what he saw in the paper and let’s just say a star was born. He even took this all a stage further by learning how to put the card into the machine too.”

Most recently Endal, as observed by some of the biggest national newspapers in 2006, has learned how to put the Chip and Pin card into the machine and remove it after the transaction which Allen is proud to reveal makes him the first dog in the world to achieve this remarkable feat. “Being in a wheelchair can make simple everyday activities next to impossible,” he adds, “but having a thinking and problem solving dog at my side makes anything possible. When we come to a lift door Endal has already positioned himself on the button side and waits for me to direct him to the up or down button.”

Hot news, Endal the Rescuer Lab Dog!

But the most amazing example of Endal’s initiative happened in May 2001 when the pair were invited to a stand at Crufts.  After checking into the hotel the night before, Allen took Endal outside for a run across a green on the other side of the hotel car park. As usual his lead was clipped to the chair. Suddenly a Ford car reversed towards them at 40 mph. Endal was between Allen and the car so, instinctively, he pushed the dog out of the way. Seconds later, the car knocked the chair over and Allen blacked out. When he came round, he found Endal pulling his body over, using his teeth on his jacket, to put Allen into the recovery position. The dog then ran back for his mobile phone, which he got out of the bag, and thrust against his face. After that, he went back for his blanket from the chair and then ran up to the hotel reception, barking for help.

The story hit the national headlines. Endal, it appeared, was the first dog  who had ever put a human into the recovery position, without being taught. Once again he was a familiar face on the television and in the news. Everyone wanted footage of this remarkable dog. But the fame came at a price. Endal had overstretched himself by jumping up at the cashpoint so many times. And the following day, he went severely lame during a fund-raising event.

The pet story continues..
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