Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Joy of Running

Last week, I got the OK to start running again.  Hurray!!!!!  I wanted to finish out the week with swimming, though, and so I figured I'd take the weekend off and start running again on Monday.  However, ever since I got the OK to run again, I've wanted to head out with Cody.

I waited and waited, but this morning I couldn't take it anymore.  I laced up my sneakers, threw on a sweatshirt, leashed up Cody, and I was off. 

We hadn't gone far, maybe 1.5 km, when I heard a man yelling.  Since I live in the city, this isn't that big of a deal, so I planned on ignoring him.  Still, though I couldn't help but look over, and when I did, I saw a small Lhasa Apso, leash attached, standing on the corner.  When I actually listened to what the man was saying I heard, "Can you grab that dog?!"  Being the dog trainer that I am, of course I was going to help, but as soon as I turned towards the dog he started running way.  I thought maybe Cody would slow him down, so I released Cody from his heel, but the dog was nervous and ran faster (luckily into a soccer field and not the road).  Well, I did what any dog lover would do.  I stopped my watch, and I headed off to the soccer field to try to corral this dog. 

He was nervous, and I knew I didn't want to chase him, but I also didn't want to lose sight of him, and I certainly didn't want him to run into the road.  So, I stayed a fair distance behind him, and always kept him in sight.  We circled the soccer field twice, and even stopped traffic briefly, when I started to notice two things.  1) This little Lhasa, with short little legs, was slowing down considerably.  He was tiring out.  2) He was showing a little more interest in Cody.  Of course, this is probably because Cody was becoming less interested in him, but I decided to use both to my advantage.

I released Cody from his heel again, and watched to see if the Lhasa would interact all.  He didn't really interact, but he was distracted by Cody.  He started to hesitantly approach, but was being very cautious.  While this little guy was looking at Cody, I tried to creep up on him.  I was a few yards away when he noticed me, and he took off.  However, since he was fairly tired, the speed at which he took off was not very fast.  I thought, "If I can just run fast enough, I can step on his leash."  So, I sprinted, I caught up with him, and I put my foot out.  The next thing I knew, I had caught this dog.

Here's the best part:  This dog had only been with his owners for a day and a half.  They had gotten him from a guy who was on his way to take him to the pound.  He had been under-socialized and under-loved for quite some time.  In fact, it's a miracle he stayed in the field that he did.  He could have easily started running and not stopped for quite some time.

One of my favorite parts was when the dog's mom said to her husband, "Did you see how she caught him?  She's a runner and she ran so fast she was able to grab his leash!"  It made me feel awesome!

I am so grateful that I decided to go out on a run.  I am so grateful that Cody was with me.  I am so grateful I was able to help.

Oh, and as for Cody and his participation, he got lots of love, he did get to meet the other dog, AND he got a bit of ham from the dog's owner.

All in all, it ended up being a great day!

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