Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Security System by Clyde Hoch

Security System
by Clyde Hoch

A couple of years ago I purchased a security system. It weighed about 12 pounds, it was quite pricey. I had my choice of black or brown. I thought black looked better and would not be seen at night.

The system probably cost me about $50 a month, everything in consideration. I am pleased with it. It lets me know when someone comes near my yard. It lets me know when something is not quite right in my yard. Most people that see it are usually very afraid of it until they get used to it.

The system has gained about 100 pounds, has large teeth and runs very fast. The system is a 110-pound Doberman. He is with me almost all the time. He loves chasing squirrels, cats and kids. He never caught a squirrel, I don’t know what he would do if he did.

I saw a young boy playing in my yard, my Doberman saw him and ran towards him. The poor kid looked back as he was running and had a look on his face like he was a goner. I let it go until the Doberman was about 100 feet from the kid when I called him back. I never saw the kid in my yard again.

My Doberman has become my best friend. No matter what the price, he is worth it. He and I went to school one day a week for over a year, so he could be my service dog.

I used to take him to a meeting when he was young, and people got angry because he was bored and whined. I was told not to bring him to that meeting again. I told them neither he or I would attend the meeting again.

He is over two years old now and when I take him to meetings he is very good. At times I ask if anyone would mind if I took his service dog vest off. Most people look forward to it. Once his vest is off he is free to do almost what he wants. Usually he runs around the room greeting everyone. Once I called him back and put the vest on he settles down and is quiet.

I had him in classes that were eight hours long. When we got our first break I took him out to a field to run. As we were walking out I heard several people say they didn’t even know a dog was in the room. The only time he got up was when a person in a desk behind us accidentally bumped him with his foot.

People can not believe the difference with the vest-on vest-off thing. People say it’s like a light switch, he is a totally different dog.

As a veteran with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) it is very hard to trust people. I totally trust my buddy. I sleep better at night knowing he is nearby and would wake me if anything happened. I can not stand being in large groups of people. It is much better with my buddy. I don’t know what I would do without him. I don’t think he would know what to do without me.

In Vietnam we all worked together and had each other’s back. I know my buddy has my back. It is a very comfortable feeling.

The drawback to having him is people who would normally walk right by me, now want to pet him or talk about him. Do not pet or talk to a dog with a service dog vest on. A service dog is not a therapy dog. A service dog must go through extensive training. A therapy dog does not. A therapy dog is trained so people can pet him and feel better. A service dog must be admitted into any establishment. A therapy dog does not.

A service dog is trained to do specific tasks for their teammate. For instance, when I’m driving he sits on the back seat. When I get road rage he puts his head on my shoulder and no matter how angry I am he calms me down. I have already banged my fist on my desk. He got up, came to me and licked my arm. In meetings when I get to something very sensitive to me, he nudges me. When he nudges me, I know it’s time to think about something else. Once I had him laying about 30 feet from me. I got to something that was very sensitive to me and he got up and came to me. People in the audience noticed it.

I know people do not understand the bond between a veteran and his service dog.

Connect with Clyde…

Read Clyde's childhood story about Spike, a cherished Clydesdale...

Books by Clyde Hoch:

Tracks Memoirs of a Vietnam Veteran This is Clyde’s military experience as a tank commander in Vietnam.

A Tribute to Tankers has a short description on a type of tank and follows with stories of people who served in that type of tank in combat, starting with WWI and ends with Iraq.

B. A. R. Man Browning Automatic Rifle Man is the story of a young man who does some amazing things in the Korean War until he is wounded and captured by the Chinese. He is forced to march 200 miles with no medical attention. He is held as a POW for two and a half years.

A Man Down is the story of four young men who gave their lives for their country. This book won a bronze medal from Readers Favorite.

Albion is Clyde’s first work of fiction. It has eight chapters. Each chapter is a different story and different period in time.

God Help Me! Cause No One Else Will is Clyde’s sixth book. It is about post-traumatic stress disorder and veteran's suicides and how to prevent them. 

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