Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Dog in the Park

While I travelled to Poland and Israel, and bwo flew off to the family wedding in San Diego, Roxy spent the time with Clive. Clive, "Deputy Dawg" the dog walker is great with her. He walks her at least once or twice a week, and she is always excited to go out with him and his pack. Unfortunately he is also a little too expensive for us, and with the amount of travelling we will be doing over the next few months we will need to find an alternative. Yesterday evening after work, Clive dropped Roxy back home. We were very happy to see each other (Roxy and I, not Clive) and her black and white body shook and shivered while she panted happily. We went out on our regular walk, down to the river and played catch with the tennis ball for a while. It's a reasonable place to let her off the lead as it's a huge open field. She even came back when bribed with doggie treats. So I was feeling like I had this whole dog handling thing down.

I got up early this morning and decided to take Roxy to Richmond Park. Clive told me he lets her off the leash and lets her run when he takes them to the park, so I thought what the hell. She immediately took off like a bat out hell and promptly disappeared for 20 minutes chasing squirrels and rabbits. You could just barely spot her tiny silhouette in the far distance as she darted from tree to tree and burrow to burrow. Luckily there were no deer around. All the while I paced back and forth calling out from time to time, offering treats and water, even the tennis ball - she was just not interested. She would spot another squirrel in the distance and would take off with single minded obsession. All this reminded me of the video below, that went viral in the UK. Basically it's a guy shouting "Fenton! Fenton! Fenton!!!" after his dog as it chases deer in the very same Richmond Park. Everyone in this country has seen it and I can even say that Roxy went all Fenton on me and most people would smile knowingly (I like the whole "JESUS CHRIST, Fenton!" thing). Roxy finally came skipping back, happy with herself, tongue hanging out, eyes sparking, with a huge smile on her face. I don't think I can let her loose in the park too often, I just haven't the nerves.

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