Doggy December - Day 13 - Sunday Strolling
Milly loves a walk. Even though her wonky, arthritic back legs start hurting at the 500 metre mark, she's always ready to go as soon as I lace up my sneakers or merely glance toward the laundry cupboard where her lead is stored.
Today though, we left her at home and didn't realise until arrived at the Abbotsford Convent and the Collingwood Children's Farm that they both allowed dogs on leads to enter.
Even so, Milly's one failing (that's such a harsh word) is that she loathes other dogs. Since the running on the oval stopped due to her arthritis, she won't tolerate a sniff, a wagging tail or even a look from another dog and strains against the leash to really let them have it. This extends to me too, and her eyes nearly pop out of their sockets from the effort to attack if I look like I'm about to pat another canine. Jealousy is sort of flattering, but for a dog lover like me, it's clear that I can only display this interest when Milly's at home. As such, with so many of her self-designated enemies around, she'd have made the outing a strain on my right arm, generated a lot of angry barking and a flurry of apologies from me.
So, I got to meet a few other furry friends......
...like Harry here. He's fourteen years old (98 in dog years) and, in his proud owner's words, "Blinder than Blind Freddie in a power failure at midnight" and tends to get the tremors when he's happy or excited. It's nice to report that my pats certainly did set him a-shakin.'
Vinnie emerged from the cafe with his owner but his demeanour suggested that I could look but not touch. "He's a dear, really," the sixty-something lady accompanying him said, "But he twisted his leg jumping off the verandah steps this morning and is a bit grouchy about it." Fair enough. The white ear and the black/brown ear look as though they were painted by a pre-schooler.
This little girl was around the back of the cafe, anxiously awaiting her owner's arrival. She let me pat her, but was always looking in the direction that presumably her master or mistress had headed in. My whispers of, "Chill, sweetie, your owner will come back soon," did nothing to erase the worried expression in her eyes.
I'm going to call this chap Robert because that's where he was standing when the camera clicked. His two owners were a few metres behind, still debating whether to stop for a coffee or continue into the garden but he'd clearly decided that more walking and greenery was the order of the day. I had just called out, "Hello little fella"when he turned around, posed for a moment like a true professional ('Give the paps what they want - that great front-on shot - and then they'll leave you alone'). Off he trotted, last seen heading towards the rotunda by the fig trees.
How cute is Twix's smile? Twix is yes, named after the chocolate bar. She was more than happy to smile for a photo and her curly tail apparently hints at an ancestry that could possibly include Pug, Pomeranian, Corgi, Jack Russell and Spaniel. Twix's human companion Pam adopted her after finding her dumped in the alleyway behind her house as a very young pup. "However, it is only me who gets to eat the Twix bars; Twix has carob drops." Twix seems pretty happy with this deal.
Dogs who pass by and want to meet up with each other always amuse me. Whippet and poodle here generated enough force to get their lead-holders to stop....
.....and let them jump, wag, lick and greet each other with an enthusiasm that only dogs can generate.
All of them are gorgeous characters in their own right, but when I got home, I gave my own special character a quick walk, a few pats and a long tummy tickle. American wildlife photographer and writer Roger Caras (1928-2001) was right when he said, “Some of our greatest historical and artistic treasures we place in museums; others, we take for walks.”