The Zen and the zealot of dogwalking

Dogs and people and walking. You know the ones. The folks who get walked by their dogs. The dogs who are like Alaskan huskies hauling people behind on the wooden sleds. Only substitute sidewalks for snow, huskies for any other breed and sleds for leashes.

I’ve never cared for that look. Never ever. I like dogs that are disciplined and have been through basic obedience, at the very least. A disciplined dog is a happy dog. A disciplined dog is also a happy human. Your mileage may vary but that’s how I look at it.

And, as an aside, one of several reasons I like watching dog shows. The animals are extremely cared for, obviously, well behaved and responsive on a leash.

I digress. As I was saying, I’ve never cared for that look for Dog Walking Person.

And yet there I am, doing it. Before  you launch an attack or point out the irony, let me finish. The dog I am walking is not mine. Repeat: not mine. He’s my roommate’s. And since he’s away for a spell, dog Ivan falls under my care.

Ivan is a German shorthaired pointer. A medium-sized dog who’s about bulk. And around 6-8 extra pounds, hence I’m giving him the walks he doesn’t normally get.

Bulk and physical might. And no discipline. A dangerous combo indeed. Our walks consist of him pulling and straining 10 steps ahead of me and me holding tight to the leash with both hands. It’s not as easy as it sounds. For starters, I have maybe only 50 pounds on him and am little taller than Ivan standing on his back legs. It takes every ounce of energy and muscle to keep pace, keep control and keep him out of trouble.

The Zen of dogwalking? Try the zealot of dogwalking.

(a zealot by the name of Ivan.)

My roommate, on the other hand, is built like a linebacker, thus him walking Ivan would not be nearly the exhausting strain that it is for me.

Oh, and did I mention the leash burns of the hands?

I do rather dislike that sight of Dog Walking Person, yet I am that person while the roommate’s away. I ought to wear a sign on my back that reads: Not My dog. And a pair of falconry gloves.


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