Lions International Convention - Fun, Organized Chaos

Published in: Update - Issue 3 - 2017 »   

“Everyone was so delighted to see such beautiful dogs and were
amazed how they adapt and work with us,” says Lion Richard
Kent, pictured here with several Lions club members from Chile.

30,000 Lions Club International members from around the world... 4th of July weekend in Chicago... a 2.6 million square foot convention center with seating for 18,000 people. Sound daunting? Imagine navigating this environment without being able to see. Imagine being a guide dog leading through the organized chaos. Leader Dog teams (and Lions) Richard Kent and LD Easy, and Pauline Ulrey and LD Satch, have navigated many tricky environments, but nothing on this scale.

“I had never been in this type of environment with Easy before,” says Richard Kent. “My ability to get around the convention so easily is due to the training that Leader Dog provided to both me and Easy. We learned that anytime you are in an area with a lot of congestion you have to take it slow. Easy gets excited a little bit, but the control we both learned helps tremendously.”

Pauline Ulrey had a similar experience, “From leading our relatively quiet lifestyle in a residential neighborhood with no sidewalks, attending this convention was the total opposite. Navigating revolving doors, escalators and thousands of people was a challenge; but we finally found a consistent route from the entrance [of the convention hall] to the Leader Dog exhibit space.”

Though neither Richard or Pauline attended urban training in Chicago, their years of experience working with their dogs helped them to successfully travel through the chaotic fun that is the Lions International Convention.