Dogger had her best visit to the dog park in months. Not only was she in the big dog park, but she was in the big dog park off leash! Imagine! Off Leash at the Off Leash Dog Park! She was visibly excited.
How did this happen? I had another a dentist appointment, my last scheduled until next November Please Gawd, and instead of being a good girl and going back to work, I went home. It was a beautiful day, sunny, damp but not wet and it just wouldn’t have been right to go back to work to sit there for an hour and a half. Also, I worked through lunch because I was leaving early.
At first I was disappointed that there were small dogs in Doggers small dog park, One? Wasn’t even all that small and only seemed to be there to keep his beaglely friend company. A approached the large dog park with some trepidation. This was the three-thirty dog park group. We’re never here that early and we know not one of these dogs; fortunately, the three-thirty dogs stay pretty close to their people and their people were hanging around the middle of the park. Dogger and I had the whole back end of the park to ourselves and after a brief leashed walk around, I let Dogger go.
She was so excited!, she hasn’t been free to run at the park in a very long time. We both had a good time wandering the fence line and generally being off leash. Walking around the Off Leash Dog Park with my dog on a leash isn’t exactly fun for me either. I hate it that people get the impression that Dogger is a mean, dangerous dog when she couldn’t be further from that, it makes me sad that the other dog people and the other dogs don’t get to know the real Dogger. It used to be that everybody knew Dogger and everyone loved her, dogs and people alike. I guess that was then.
Now, I get tense when another dog approaches her. I restrain her whenever another dog comes within lunging distance. I have noticed that the few times a dog has gotten close to her that she tries to move away from it - Not exactly the best response, dogs see this as a weakness. Even “nice” dogs think weakness smells like hamburger.
But today that wasn’t a problem. The three-thirty dogs are mostly younger and smaller and have not been coming to the park long enough to pick up the aggression that can be a side effect of habitual park attendance. The oldest dog there was a very elderly female basset whom very politely snuffed Dogger while Dogger very pointedly ignored her. And the then the basset started barking and scared us, while alerting every other dog in the park to the fresh meat she had uncovered. Fortunately, the three-thirty people pay attention to what their young dogs are doing and they called their dogs off - Not that the dogs were doing anything “wrong”, but Dogger and I were both more comfortable when the herd dispersed.
And then I talked to one of the people! Who was not smoking or wearing a “Kill all the Democrats” tee-shirt or smoking and wearing a “Kill all the Democrats” tee-shirt. It was refreshing to talk to someone at the park who wasn’t trying to kill both of us. We had a nice chat about dog behavior and I got to pet on her dog.
I got to socialize with other dogs! I almost never get to pet other dogs anymore, which is odd, because it’s a dog park and I haven’t really pet another dog in months. I think I need to change when I go to the park. I can’t come at three -thirty, as nice as that would be and I don’t really want to go at five anymore, so I’m going to start checking out how the park is later. We only changed out time in the first place because of Drama Dog and I’m not sure Drama’s people are even going there anymore, a lot of the old-timers have stopped going. We can try six and see how we like it then.