Adventures in Dogwalking: Miss Congeniality
I planned Goldie’s walks to make her happy. Goldie was a hunter, so city walks and parks were boring to her. She wanted somewhere brushy and dirty. The more gophers and bunnies the better. Our walk routes were developed around those factors.
Abbie Lynn, however, is a whole different animal. She does not hunt. Last night we saw 2 bunnies, and her expression was a mild “Oh, hm, look at that animal.” Goldie would have run through cactus (ask me how I know (and why I carried needle-nosed pliers in my pack)) to get to bunnies.
Abbie Lynn wants 2 things from a walk: to see people who might be her friend, and to see other dogs who might be her friends.
SHe will see someone 50 yards away and begin wagging. She puts herself in a smaller, wigglier “Look what a cute dog I am” posture. If the person responds, bliss. If they don’t – like last night when runners kept passing us on the trail at the park – she looks confused and dejected.
She will trot after runners, not in an aggressive “Must chase running thing” kind of way, but rather a “Hey, wait up, friend! You still have a chance to meet my cuteness” way.
She also loves every dog she meets. Friendly dogs get the full springy play bow and hop, while aggressive ones cause her to stand calm and still, waiting for them to realize she’s no threat.
I can see lots of dog parks and play dates in my future. I had imagined another good hiking partner, but I don’t think back hills trails are going to make this mutt happy. She needs her public.