City Hounds

Just sniffin' around…

A Walk in the Park: Fall

We live a block away from a beautiful Victorian park.  Likely inspired by Olmsted’s design for Central Park, Miller Park contains two war memorials, a large lake, paddle boats, a beach, a Park House for special occasions, a mini-golf course, two play areas and a zoo. Oh, and an outdoor theater.

Red, posing in the park

Steve and I don’t take advantage of this beautiful space as much as we should, but the dogs do.  We walk there every day.  We meet others with dogs, but since we walk on the road, there’s plenty of room to pass.  We meet fishermen, sometimes in scary hats or hoods and holding long poles.  We meet cyclists and skateboarders.  These meetings are all good training opportunities, and Red and Ruby have grown into very good walkers.

Our old house

When we moved to town eleven years ago, we rented a house right across the street from the park.  We loved that little house, but had to move when Steve quit working and went back to school.  We needed a place with cheaper rent and wanted something closer to the university.  A year later, we decided to buy our own place, and it isn’t surprising that we ended up right back on this side of town, just a block away from the park.

We’ve often talked about moving to a larger house, or a different location (one closer to shops, work, etc.), but the park is part of what holds us here.  In the winter, when the sidewalks are unshoveled and the roads are slick, if I can get to the park I know the roads will be plowed and the traffic minimal – it’s a safe place for us to walk.  There are lots of routes we can take through the park, so we don’t get bored.  This time of year, it’s like walking through a painting.  The park glows, and walking there is an enchanting way to start our day.

Annual visitors

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November 8, 2011 Posted by | Adventures | , , | Leave a comment

Happy Halloween!

Clown? Or Pimp? We'll go with clown.

I’ve thought about dressing up the dogs before, for Halloween or just for fun, but I didn’t want to be perceived as the sad-woman-with-no-kids-who-dresses-her-dogs-instead.  But, I think as I come to terms with the fact that Steve and I probably won’t have children, and begin to live a grand life without kids, I’ll worry less about that.  This year, I decided the heck with what other people might think; I’m just going to have fun with it.

So I planned ahead, got costumes, and made homemade dog treats to deliver the the pooches on our block.  We tried the costumes on the dogs last week, but didn’t do as much conditioning as we should have.  Red was okay, but his hat kept falling off – I’ll need to adjust that if we’re going to use the same costume next year!  Ruby didn’t do as well.  Her discomfort brought out her agression. I’m not sure if she wasn’t happy with her costume or didn’t like Red’s.   Maybe she didn’t want to be a witch?

Ruby the B/Witch

In any case, Red and I made our deliveries without her.  Things I learned:

1. Get the dog more used the costume in advance and make sure it fits.

2. Don’t drop a treat bag,or Red will eat it, bag and all. (Thankfully, I got the paper bags…)

3. Go later.  Some neighbors weren’t home yet.

4. Stay away from the door if the resident answers with the dog.  Red made one friend this way (Wigwag the bulldog), but got bit in the butt by a bunch of little yappers at another place. 🙂  That’s the  thanks he got for delivering them treats!

Seriously, though, I think I was guilty of being a little to excited/nervous about the outing.  Two of our neighbors were getting ready to leave to walk their dogs, so I rushed out the door to catch them before they left, giving Red little time to settle down and relax before doing something new.  Next time, in addtion to getting the dogs accustomed to their costumes in advance, I’ll take things slow before we leave and give them plenty of time to settle down.

November 2, 2011 Posted by | Adventures | Leave a comment