Walking the dogs

by Bill - 2009-11-09 - in family / pets /


It's something I do every night. I actually stopped for several months starting in May, I guess, when my back problems flared up. Then came my knee surgery, which kept me from walking much. Then I got to where I enjoyed not having to walk the dogs every freakin' night of my life. :) But then they started doing their business in the house way too often, and Tara asked me to start walking them again. Actually, her words were, "We need to start walking them again," meaning, of course, that I had to do it. Whenever she says "we" she means me. I think that's standard for women.

Anyway, it all starts after dinner with the dogs ... well, Joey, following me everywhere I go. When I open the closet door where we keep the leashes, Joey's right there and Daisy hurries over. Joey spins around once or twice, and I have to catch him right then, otherwise he runs away and makes me chase him down. Daisy's usually easy to corral. Chandler never moves. I almost always have to drag him off the couch where he's been sleeping in between naps.

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Once outside, Daisy is the leader, pulling on her leash the hardest. Joey's right next to her, but Daisy usually stays just a little bit in front. Joey will fairly often take the lead, but Daisy only allows that for a few seconds before retaking the lead. Chandler brings up the rear, and that's fine with him. He has no need to be leader of the pack. He does, however, feel the need to stay on my left. Chandler is always behind and to my left. Joey — usually on my left, too, but not obsessive about it — likes to stop, sniff things, maybe pee, then circle back around behind me, coming out on my right. He can really tangle you up in his leash if you're not careful, but I've gotten pretty nimble with the leashes over the years.

Chandler makes a point of peeing on whatever Joey has just peed on. It's a guy thing. Joey is bigger and more "aggressive" than Chandler — if any pug can be called aggressive — but he came into our family last, so that puts him at the bottom of the totem pole. That's just how it usually works in the dog world. Daisy is the least obsessive of the pugs, at least on their walks. She's also the most aggressive. She's the one I have to hang onto the tightest when another dog comes along, because she will try to attack ... until it gets right up to her, at which point she will either hide behind me or roll onto her back and be submissive, probably saying in dog-speak, "Please don't kill me!" Still, she's got a pretty fierce growl and bark from a distance.

She's also the best at reading my mind. When we have a choice of directions at an intersection, all I have to do is decide which way to go, and she's right there with me. Ahead of me, but instinctively knowing which way I intended to go ... usually. Not Joey. He will always try to go whichever way we went last time. Daisy can also sense my emotions about cars going too fast or coming too close. I used to get angry at people driving these quiet neighborhood streets at almost twice the speed limit. Sensing this, Daisy would then start lunging at oncoming cars. It wasn't until I controlled my own anger that Daisy also stopped lunging. Of course, I also got to where I could sense one of her impending lunges, so I would tell her "no," and she'd be cool. You probably think I'm crazy, but I know what I know. Apparently, so does Daisy. :)

They're all good dogs, especially Chandler, my "biggest" and best puppy. Then again, Daisy is my "best little girl pug." That used to be "best little girl," period, until Elizabeth came along and I had to add "pug" to the end of it. And then there's Joey, my lap dog. Actually the biggest, even though I tell Chandler that he is, Joey loves being on my lap, asleep, while I'm at the computer. But then my butt will fall asleep from all that weight and I have to get up and walk around. And that seems a good place to end this story.

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Comments
"Nice story, Bill. Eleanor sometimes says she'd like a dog, like a Lab, but I say no way. I'm the one who'd have to walk him, and I can think of lots of things I'd rather do." — Dad, 2009-11-09 16:13:34
"Great story, Bill! Dad, a dog would be good for both you and Eleanor, but not a Lab. A small house dog would be great! " — Lucy, 2009-11-11 16:37:40
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