Hart Ford
Hart Ford

Time for a walk!

I was deep into a REM dream during my morning nap, and I felt something on my left hand. When you are sleeping, and something from the real world touches you, sometimes it morphs into your dream. In this case, I felt that I was grabbing some cold, wet vanilla ice-cream; I began to wake up as I reached for more of what felt was ice cream. As I became more conscious, I noticed that one of my dogs was licking my hand to wake me up. I opened my eyes, and he became excited, began wagging his tail, jumped up to lick my face. It is an interesting way to wake up, to say the least. My other dog joined in until I begged them to back off, and I realized what they wanted. It was time for a walk!

I take my dogs for a walk daily. If they do not get out, they have extra energy that manifests itself in a noisy, play fight that happens during the evening. It is fun to watch a little, but they can get out of control and bump into things, tables, my knee, etc. When I take them for a walk, they burn out the energy, and the evening is quiet and more relaxing. According to my dogs, every day is a good day for an adventure outside. The weather has no impact on the ability to go. Neither wind, sleet, hail, ice, snow, heat has any power to diminish their desire to head out. I have had to buy rain gear, warm coats, hats, gloves, and removable ice cleats for my boots. I have multiple types of bug repellent, sunscreen, and self-defense tools like bear spray, an air horn, and a walking stick that I take with me for our journeys. What makes them happiest on our outings is when one of our neighbors or visitors in the area come around the corner into view. Both dogs look at me, look at them and get excited. I command them to stay with me if it’s someone I do not know until I ask them if they like dogs and would like to pet my dogs. If it is yes, I tell my dogs it’s okay and tell them to go. One dog runs right up for a petting. My other dog runs toward the visitors, stops, and runs back to me like she wants to be sure she has my permission, I tell her to go ahead, and she gleefully runs for her petting. 
Other favorite games are to smell almost everything they come across. One finds it then telepathically the other senses that there is something great to smell. Sometimes they smell the same spot in unison, or they take turns. Any food thrown from a car hours or a day ago, they go for, and I have to command them to leave-it! When the snow was deep, they love to roll in it and frolic it in the snow. As the snow melts and the ditches turn to mud, they still love to roll and frolic in it, but being good dogs, they stay out of the mud, mostly. One of my favorite games with them when there is no mud is a game called “Zoomie!” Started usually when one of the dogs gets a wild look in the eye then begins running in random directions that keep changing randomly at breakneck speeds. This is key to draining away their energy.
When we get back home, the dogs run into the house and begin lapping up water like they just came out of the Sahara Desert. The drinking goes on for several minutes. If we get done close to dinner time, they wait by their bowls. If not, they literally drop like rocks on the floor with a loud thump and immediately fall asleep. They have a nice nap and dream about what dogs dream about. Treats, ever full dinner bowls, and of course, going for their next walk!


“Remember, every day is a gift! Some are just a little more fun to open than others. – © Joel M. Vernier 03/10/2021 Author of: “The Guinea Pig In The Freezer.” joelmvernier@aol.com

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