Dog walking adventures: new fur friends in the ‘hood

The other day, an innocent little walk with a single poochie turned into an adventure involving four other dogs.

Oh what fun. 🙃

It all began with a walk to the other end of the neighborhood. Molly, the little Schnoodle belonging to our friends, was hanging out at Tucker’s house. I told my friends I would get her from Tucker’s and bring her to my house during my lunch walk with my client’s dog Jasper. This did two things: it exposed Jasper to new people (and furry friends) in the ‘hood, and gave Molly some variety in her routine.

Jasper is new to the neighborhood. He hasn’t met too many dogs yet. And winter is a little trickier than summer to be social, am I right?

So Jasper and I marched in a brilliant December sunshine to meet Tucker and simultaneously pick up Molly.

It was chaos! All three dogs reacted as if they were old friends and Jasper was more than a little perturbed he didn’t get to go inside Tucker’s house. That wasn’t the point of the visit, I tried to tell him. We’re there to pick up Molly, not invade other people’s homes. 😊

It took a while of barking, sniffing and dancing around till I got the correct two dogs on their respective leashes and we were finally on our way.

At the bottom of Tucker’s street is a park skirting the shores of Lake Ontario. The sunshine and lack of wind made it very pleasant to be out and about, and the water shimmered in shades of blue and gold. Across the bay was a panoramic view of the Toronto skyline and I knew immediately I just had to snap a photo of it. Preferably with the dogs in it.

Well.

That was rather challenging. Neither was particularly interested in obeying my commands to sit! and stay! 🙄

I finally tied them to a tree and while one of them yelped as I took two steps away from them I snapped about six pictures. One of them turned out. 😊

After that, we continued our walk toward Jasper’s street. Molly, very familiar in her neighborhood, never missed a beat to demonstrate to her new fur-friend which house required particular tugging towards.

“See this house with the fence? They have treats there!” she seemed to educate Jasper.

“That house over there, with the round porch and the long rope tied to it? That’s my friend and they have treats there, too.”

And so it went for several blocks. 🙃

When we managed to get to Jasper’s street with both my arms still attached in their sockets, we noticed a couple of dogs in the caged tennis courts next to the baseball diamond. Sometimes, people take their dogs in there because there’s a gate and if you let the dogs off leash to fetch a ball, there is no chance of them running off.

I recognized one dog, but not the human nor the other dog.

Weird, I remember thinking. That’s Lilly but not her owner, nor her dog walker.

My two pooches were naturally curious so I let them pull me up to the fence. Both Jasper and Molly had met Lilly in passing before so they were familiar with her scent.

The woman in the tennis court walked over and started talking to me through the chain-link. It wasn’t long before I deemed the situation safe and we entered the gate to greet Lilly and her pal.

“That’s Baily,” the woman said. “I’m Michelle” she introduced herself.

The dogs sniffed each other, and surprisingly, no one humped anyone. I let Molly off first, then Jasper, and the four dogs started to play and run. One of them even had a ball.

Perfect, I thought. Jasper, being new to the ‘hood, is making some friends finally.

My usual half hour (ish) walk ended up being an hour, not an unpleasant way to spend a sunny December afternoon. When I took Jasper back to his house, and he and Molly ate a greenie treat, I got the feeling he would have preferred to continue the fun.

But I had to go grocery shopping, so I left him behind with the promise that we’ll do it again real soon.

“Don’t worry,” I said to him. “I’ll see you again tomorrow.”

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