Dudley loves to go for his daily constitutional. He blew out his knee because he slipped on the hardwood floor doing his happy dance because we were getting ready to go for a walk. He never whimpered once and was most disgusted that I did not continue our walk when I saw what a terrible limp he had and went back into the house to call the vet. He has a purposeful stride and a brisk pace even with the gimp knee. If I stop to chat with a neighbor, he doesn’t think twice about pulling on the leash to let me know it’s time to shut-up and walk. We only stop when he needs to smell each individual blade of grass in certain areas.
One nice thing about walking with a dog is I don’t have to maintain a conversation, but can let my mind wander. I usually just watch Dudley and wonder what he is thinking as he sniffs and pees throughout the neighborhood. The way he carefully sniffs hydrants and sign posts as if he’s looking for a clue always makes me picture him as some fighter in the French Resistance. He wears a black beret and if he could speak, he would sound like Pepe Le Pew. But then he’ll do something like tumble ass over teakettle down a small slope and hit the sidewalk and jump up like a gymnast who knows she missed the landing. He also looks around to see if anyone saw him and will quickly commence walking again.
Walking is good for you and your dog(s). It has been said that if your dog is overweight, then you are not getting enough exercise. Some of the health risks that accompany obesity in dogs include diabetes, higher risk of cancer, weakened immune systems and excess weight adds stress to joints and bones. This is especially true in senior dogs. Even if it is only a 5 minute walk, it is better than nothing. And if you can do two or three 5 minute walks each day, that’s even better. So, now that the weather is cooler (or for my followers in the Southern Hemisphere who are coming out of the cold) do yourself a favor and take your dog for a walk. If you need something different on the iPod, try loading The Dog Song from Nellie McKay. It’ll get you moving and that’s what it’s really all “abow-wow-wow-wout”!
Ever wonder where you’d end up if you took your dog for a walk and never once pulled back on the leash? ~Robert Brault, www.robertbrault.com