Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Elka's New Game

So, Elka and I have a pretty decent routine now, for our walks.

We get up, I do my best to get her to go potty at the house, and then we walk to the park.  I do what I can to keep her attention, and keep the leash loose (and discovered today that she really loves my homemade turkey meatballs), and she does what she can to understand what I want, and we get to the park.

At the park, the long line goes on, and as I discussed in The Rules, we're much more relaxed with the long line.  It's how I practice recall (again, turkey meatballs are apparently The Way), and mostly I just want her to not pull and to keep up.

Today, on our walk, we did a little bit of jogging.  I say "a little bit", because I put Elka in heel next to me, said "Okay", and started in with the running steps.  She took off running, wheeled around when she got to the end of her leash, play bowed, and then ran at me as hard as she could, lets going different ways like in a Mother Goose and Grimm cartoon, tongue flapping, looking like it was the most fun thing in the world.  As I was also running, and we were effectively jousting, I was understandably alarmed.  At the last second, she dodged to the side, and ran around me instead, but close in, and play bowed again, and then she shoulder checked me.  

As I'd only taken about six running steps, I didn't have enough momentum that I wiped out, and she had such an excited look on her face, that it was more funny than anything else, so she and I romped around like a couple of crazies for a little while.  It's a good thing I only run after I've checked to make sure I didn't see anybody first; I often wonder what people think, when they see Elka and I playing like that, or playing with a tug toy.  Nobody's said anything called the police yet, so I guess they figure it's none of their business!

As the walk progressed, Elka would also sniff something until I was almost past, and then wheel around and jump.  I almost caught her in my arms, once! That would be some trick, with my 77 pound dog.  "Leap into my arms!" tends to be used with the smaller dog set.  But, the "jousting" was a lot of fun for both of us, and blew off a lot of her energy, even more than just running in big crazy circles around me at the end of the leash.  


  1. She was actually slam dancing. Now you just need to teach her the audio cue. (: