Yesterday was the first time it has actually been cool enough to bring Callie & Shadow to the park for a walk….
It started out as an “adventure”, a test of my pack leadership skills. It didn’t go too well at first — Callie started growling and snarling at a couple of small dogs walking by so I corrected her. The next several dogs passed by without incident.
While I was typing this, an older couple with a beautiful, all black, female GSD came by and Callie broke free of me and charged the dog. The lady was a much better pack leader than I at the moment. She calmly got between the dogs and told Callie “NO!” I was still somewhat embarrassed but she put me at ease. As they resumed their walk, I looked at Callie. She had this look on her face like “that was YOUR fault, Mom.” And I knew she was right….I had not been paying close enough attention to my dominant girl. In the 5 or 10 minutes after our encounter, I kept a closer eye on things around us. A few more smaller dogs passed by and Callie was as calm as the brook to our left. (Mind you, the “brook” is really a river, but the summer heat and drought have evaporated a substantial amount of the water flowing downstream.)
What is it Cesar Millan says — “if you anticipate a reaction, you’ll get one”? Truer words were never spoken! Callie reads me faster than any dog I’ve ever owned. I got hold of the handle of her leash when I saw a woman coming up the path with her boxer and Callie went into “mommy protection” mode again. Loosened up the hold, and she settled down. So, it became obvious to me that my leadership skills had taken a hit with the unbearable heat wave that broke over night (at least here in Greenville, SC). Time to brush up and get back to work on being consistent.
Well, the walk back to the car was uneventful. Once home, the dogs and I went outside to our own back yard. Callie & Shadow “grazed” and ate occasional pieces of grass here and there. I just sat there typing; enjoying the delightful breeze as it wafted gently around me. Shadow tired of roaming the yard and came to lay on the ground next to my chair. It was so pretty out that I didn’t want to go inside! But I was hungry & all the food was inside.