Photo by D.Sharon Pruitt
We have had torrential rain today; an Amber Weather Alert, no less, according to the BBC news. Unfortunately dogs need walks come rain or shine and Tilly and Skye need one good walk each and some garden play on a good day and a couple of walks each otherwise. This morning’s walks were wet but the park wasn’t too waterlogged and we managed most of it between showers. Not so this afternoon, Skye went out first and just as we entered the park the heavens opened, the paths soon developed puddles at least an inch deep and the grass began to take on that suspiciously shiny look which means it is very, very wet. Walking in the rain isn’t exactly my favourite activity but bundled up in good wellies, jeans and waterproof jacket I was ok though muttering a bit about this being the longest day and supposedly summertime. Then I looked at Skye, wet through, but gloriously happy investigating puddles, looking up at the dripping trees with interest, chasing birds with delight …just plain happy. She is the happiest dog I’ve ever known, she wakes each day with such joy and greets every morning with merriment. She loves everyone and is convinced that everyone loves her, her enthusiasm for every experience is boundless even visits to the vet – she loves the vet, she loves the nurses and she accepts her injections, drops etc with no fuss because she knows she’ll get a treat afterwards (she even loves dried liver !) When we got home after an hour or so she loved being dried with a big towel and happily went to her bed with a Kong full of food while I took Tilly out.
Tilly approaches life quite differently, she is cautious and wasn’t convinced that a walk in the rain was a good idea but she plodded along beside me because she is a good dog and that’s what good dogs do. She got a bit more enthusiastic when we got to the park, though she eyed the pools on the grass with suspicion. Then she found the perfect stick, (yes, yes I know sticks are dangerous. We have the rubber safestix one but a real wooden stick is much superior in Tilly’s eyes) and she changed her outlook completely. Who cared that it was pouring, that the puddles were up to her knees she had a stick and a human who would throw it for her. Tilly lives to chase and retreive objects, balls, sticks, raggies …she loves them all. She played with the stick until we were both tired and then carefully placed it by the park gates in the hope that it will be there tomorrow and we splashed home. She isn’t keen on being dried but even she accepted that a warm towel might be worth tolerating today.
We all curled up in front of the fire, the dogs to snooze and me to watch a soppy film. Looking back on the afternoon it occured to me that I had just spent the best part of three hours out in wet windy weather but I had actually enjoyed it because I had shared the dogs’ enjoyment.