Slimming down together, you and your pet.

It occurred to me the other day that I do not make time to exercise.  I mean the kind of exercise that brings my heart rate up.  And then suddenly, the idea of jogging with my dear, sweet, beloved Hunter, Introducing Hunter came to me.  He would be happy to be outside, anytime.  He would be happy and I would get whipped into shape all at once.  Why had I not thought of it sooner?  How many times had I seen those skinny people out on the road in their wick-able, reflectorized outfits and their two hundred dollar sneakers pass by with their obedient dog proudly prancing along, right in step?  It was so simple it was ridiculous.  Sometimes that's the way life works. Fortunately or unfortunately this thought occurred to me while we were out taking a walk.  It seemed like as good a time as any to give it a whirl.  We have one of those twenty-five foot retractable leashes and Hunter happened to be twenty-five feet out with his nose in the ground, so I reeled him in to discuss the situation.  The best way to communicate with your dog is by talking out loud to him.  Whispering is just a made up term that was deemed to the first guy on T.V. who appeared to be whispering things to his dog.  In reality I'm sure that, that guy and that dog had an out loud, heart to heart, ahead of time about what stuff the soon to be famous dog whisperer was going to pretend to whisper into his dog's ear and then what that dog was going to do for the cameras. And dogs, just like people, hear better when the volume is turned up.  "So,"  I said to Hunter, loudly and carefully enunciating my words, "I have been thinking that it would be fun if you and I started jogging together.  What do you think about that?"  He cocked his head inquisitively, so I figured he wanted to know more about it. "Now, the thing about jogging is, that jogging is a little bit like running, but it is not the same thing as running.  It is more like this."  Then I gave him a quick demonstration and I jogged in a circle around him.  "The thing is, Hunter, you will have more stamina than I, because you are younger and you run across the highway to the trailer court every chance you get, and I don't.   So when I decide that it is time to slow down or maybe even to stop it will be because I NEED to.  I'll just give the leash a little tug." I showed him the tug.  "And then when you feel that tug that means we will just walk for a bit.  You know, it'll be more like walk, jog, walk, jog, walk, jog, until we are both in shape."  Hunter gave me that all knowing and understanding, glazed over gaze, that he always gives me when he has listened very carefully to what I have said.  "Whenever we jog,"  I continued, "I will keep the leash short, so we will be right in step with each other just like those people and their dogs that we see out on the highway.  What do you think?  Do you want to give it a try?"

He did.

We started out at a gentle trot.  It was quite nice really, other than the perfect view that I had of someone's corn hole. Hunter's hole But after a short while, things started to change.  It seemed as though we were picking up speed and my feet began to have a little trouble keeping the pace.  I decided it was time to give the signal.  Well, I'm no Einstein, having discovered the theory of relativity or anything, but it occurred to me that, 'One is not able to tug on a leash when one's arm is hyper-extended.'  It was a matter of seconds after this realization that my feet, which were now trailing the rest of my body began to spin like the Road Runner's.  I think perhaps this was about the time that panic set in and panic is not a word that we dog trainers  like to have in our glossaries. So, just like anyone with any lick of sense would do, I yelled at the top of my lungs, "HUNTER STOP! YOU HORSES ASS!" It is important to always use new profanity phrases during emergencies.  It is less likely that you will be ignored. Hunter turned around to see what all the screaming was about and whether or not there really was a horse behind him.  Since the leash was quite short, so as to be in step with each other like those show offs out on the road, it sent me flying into the bushes as if we were playing crack the whip, a fine game for ice and ice skaters. Typically this is where Sven would step in and give me some of his un-asked-for advice.  But in this case he will not.   Because, A) He doesn't even know that we tried it.  And, B) Nearly six years ago Sven and a ladder had a fight, in which Sven's ankle was completely demolished and the ladder barely got a scratch.  Thankfully it was only Sven's ankle that took a licking, because by the time those doctors had it all put back together I was real glad it hadn't been his head.  I think he would have looked a little bit too much like Frankenstein for my taste.  Anyway, when Sven was finally ready to leave the hospital after three weeks of being high as a kite and pampered beyond recognition, he asked the surgeon, "Do you think running is in my future?" And do you know what that guy said? "Only if you are being chased by a bear." In other words Hunter and I are on our own.  But all in all, I think things are going pretty well. Hunter in the tree

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send Millie a Message!

Inspired by the blog, a story, or an artwork? Don't hesitate to contact Millie to discuss a writing or creative work or just to have an enthusiastic conversation about the world!

Get in touch

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.